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Page from the 'Margarita Philosophica', 1535.

Page from the 'Margarita Philosophica', 1535.
3 7 c m
actual image size: 32cm x 29cm


Detail of a text page with hand-coloured woodcuts from the 'Margarita Philosophica' by Gregor Reisch (c 1467-1525). This is the first chapter of the first book and takes the form of a conversation between a teacher and pupil. First printed in 1503, this encyclopedia of knowledge was intended as a text book for scholars and is divided into twelve 'books', each dealing with the science of one of the following: grammar, dialectics, rhetoric, arithmetic, music, geometry, astronomy, natural philosophy (physics), origin of natural objects (natural history), psychology, logic and ethics. It was a popular textbook in higher schools for over half a century.

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© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library

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