The Wonderful Practice of Physick…in which the admirable, new, rare, monstrous and strange examples, are diligently propounded, about the hidden causes, signs, events, and cures of diseases. Published, by William Rand… Nich. Culpeper… And, Abdiah Cole…

London: Printed by Peter Cole, printer and book-seller… 1666

Small 8vo, 1 leaf, pp. 422, (35), 1 leaf (longitudinal title, verso blank). Title within typographical border, one woodcut in the text. Title cut close on fore-edge and repaired from behind with slight loss to border in two places, lower inner corner repaired with loss of border and ‘L’ in London, short tear in lower margin, first few leaves lightly browned, small hole in Dd3 with loss of a few letters, upper margin cut close in places but lower margin with some uncut edges. Modern quarter calf and marbled sides. Early signature of Edward Houndle on title-page.

FIRST EDITION IN ENGLISH, second issue (see below), of the Praxis Medica Admiranda of the Portuguese physician Abraham Zacuth (1575–1642), better known as Zacutus Lusitanus. The first edition of 1634 was published in Amsterdam, to where Zacutus fled after the Jews were were expelled from Portugal in 1625. The book is a selection of rare cases of every conceivable sort, including magic, mystic and spagiric medicine (ESTC). It begins with diseases of the head in Book I, Book II is on the abdomen and genitals, and Book III is on fevers and various diseases, including a 70-page appendix at the end headed “Various Observations concerning Certain Rare Diseases”. This part includes a wide variety of cases, including several of professional incompetence, ignorance or negligence. An apparently unrecorded issue. The first edition in English, and Zacutus’s only work to appear in English, was published the year before. It has exactly the same title and imprint, but a different date (1665) and collation, with 4 preliminary leaves (title, and 3 leaves of advertisements signed a1–a3) and no longitudinal title. It is not in Wing or Early English Books Online. The present issue has only one preliminary leaf (the title) which is on a stub and is possibly a cancel; the three advertisement leaves may be lacking or may have been omitted from this issue. ESTC records 3 [i.e. 2] copies of the 1665 issue, 1 at the National Library of Wales and 1 at the RCP Edinburgh (imperfect), but does not record an issue dated 1666.


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