Venice: F. Camocius, 1561. Second edition (first 1544). Folio. , 120 (recte: 103),  ff. + final blank. Collation: [*]4 A6 B6 c-e6 f6 (+1) g-q6 r8 (including final blank leaf r8), COMPLETE. Title-page with large printer's device (below a pyramid: "Prudentia Perpetuat"), verso blank; A2 with full-page woodcut portrait of the author, verso blank; A3 with full-page woodcut of classical philosophers and physicians surrounding the author (cropped with loss of about 1 cm on outer edge), verso blank. A few letters of shoulder notes on P5v cropped. Large 9-line historiated woodcut initial on A3r. Letter "H" on headline of n2v added in contemporary MS (almost certainly by the printer). Early ownership inscription on title effaced. Modern boards covered with large vellum bifolium in Hebrew, marbled pastedowns and endpapers, yapp edges. Bookplate of Piergiordio Borio M.D. by E. De Pasquale. Item #2594
Blood Circulation and Bloodletting in the Renaissance. This "execrable" and "barbarous" work is nonetheless prized on account of the spectacular full-page woodcut portrait of the author, and the unprecedented full-page academic disputation scene: here the author, seated at his writing desk (which is illuminated by a putto) and attended by Wisdom, finds acclaim from classical and "modern" physicians and philosophers; the six "modern" physicians were in fact Panizzi's contemporaries and are identified by the abbreviations in the books that lay before them (their names are given in full on fol. b2v and b3r). This woodcut is one of the very few Renaissance representations of a public disputation on bloodletting; its significance was not lost on Allen George Debus who reproduced it in "The French Paracelsians: The Chemical Challenge to Medical and Scientific Tradition in Early Modern France" (p. 4) as an example of an academic disputation. The subject under consideration, the manner of bloodletting, was worthy of dispute.
¶ K.P. Sprengel claimed that Panizza here labored to produce a defence of the Arabian method of bloodletting that was "execrable in style, and so barbarous in its intent and conception as an attempted logical dissertation, that it wearied the brains of those who undertook to unravel or to comprehend his methods of reasoning." P.C. Remondino writes: "Being possessed, in common with all men of his class, with the most indefinite and rambling notions concerning the existence, etiology, and pathology of the morbid humors, and utterly at sea as to an information of the existence, objects, courses, or play of the circulation in the economy, [Panizzi] reasoned from a bewildering and barbarous mixture of geometrical and astrological premises, arguing that it was best to bleed from a distant part or vein, as, for the first 8 days of a disease, the determination of the mass of blood towards the affected parts would necessarily be inconsiderable, therefore he advised that for this primary period of invasion it was best to follow the Arabian system of bleeding; after which, if the disease still persisted, blood might then be drawn from a nearer vein according to the Hippocratic or Greek system. When we consider the paludal nature of the country in which the mathematic and geometric Panizza practised his skill, the great heat in the valleys at noon and the nearness of the mountains which at times suddenly and unexpectedly pour down the most chilling of blasts, inducing all manner of fever and of acute congestive attacks either of the thoracic or abdominal organs, we feel that either the inhabitants or Panizza must have gone early, as he must, if he lived long enough, have been a most deadly practitioner, and unless Providence took him off in time, it is safe to say that he would have depopulated the country just as he horrified all logical minds by his barbarous dissertations." (SOURCE: "History of the Evolutionary Process that Led to the Discovery of the Circulation of the Blood by William Harvey" in: Philadelphia Monthly Medical Journal, 1899, vol. I, p. 654).
¶ COMMENT: This was no doubt an expensive medical book to print and publish in 1561, suggesting that Ludovico Panizza (Lodovico Paniza) possessed a great deal of resources and connections. It is therefore remarkable that the fame of this Mantuan physician -- who is so graphically exalted herein, and who received such praise from his contemporaries on fols. 73-120 (recte: 103), has otherwise vanished. We know, however, that he was the personal physician to the Duke of Mantua. Vesalius describes him as "a famous doctor of my age" (The China Root Epistle, trans. Daniel Garrison, p. 43). The works of Vesalius appears herein on fols. 28v and 51v (recte: 52v).
¶ Adams P-166. Wellcome I, 4710. Edit16 CNCE 53686 (wrong collation: it is fol. *103* that is missigned "120," not fol. 102).