The Envious Tooth of Time

Iconologia di Cesare Ripa, 1613

Title page, Iconologia di Cesare Ripa, 1613

Cesare Ripa, Iconologia. Siena, 1613.  Title page with dedication and printer's device (Florini).

This rare 1613 edition of Cesare Ripa’s Iconologia was acquired by the PSU Library through the Gordon Hunter Fund and is an exciting addition to the collection. First published without illustrations in 1593, Iconologia was conceived initially as a manual for orators who wished to enliven their speaking with allegorical inventions. Its real success came, however, with the first illustrated edition in 1603, when it quickly became an indispensible tool for artists to express abstract concepts allegorically.

Spine and front cover of Ripa's Iconologia

View of spine and front cover of PSU Special Collections' 1613 edition of Ripa's Iconologia.  The cover, fashioned out of manuscript sheet music on vellum that may date a century or more earlier, is thought to be a replacement of the book's original cover, and may be unique to this book.

Ripa's Iconologia, seen closed, spine and front cover
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