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Vienna Dioscurides

Vienna Dioscurides (ADEVA facsimile)

Pedanius Dioscurides, a 1st-century Greek physician who traveled as a surgeon with the Roman army, is credited with compiling a comprehensive list of medicinal plants.  Although his original Greek text did not survive, the information was reproduced in other languages and used by medical practitioners for over 1500 years. 

The most famous example is a 6th-century Byzantine illuminated manuscript created as a gift for Princess Juliana Anicia.  The book includes 383 full-page, detailed illustrations of plants.  Handwritten notations in Greek, Latin, Persian, Turkish, Arabic and Hebrew give evidence of the work’s broad appeal.

 

 

Because the original is at the Austrian National Library in Vienna, the book is called the Vienna Dioscurides.  To improve access to this amazing volume, in 1965 ADEVA printed a limited number of high-quality facsimiles of the Vienna Dioscurides.  Owing to the generosity of His Excellency Ahmed Obaid Al Mansoori, a Creighton alumnus (Class of 1995) from Dubai, the Rare Books collections have one of the ADEVA editions.  Scholars of pharmacology, medicine, botany, classics, arts and many other disciplines will find this volume of interest.