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Hauck Botanical Exhibit

Hortus Sanitatis Minor/Ein Gart der Gesundheit.

Mainz: Peter Schoeffer, 1485

Cover of Hortus Sanitatis Minor/Ein Gart der Gesundheit
Cover

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Recognized for the quality of its illustrations, Ein Gart der Gesundheit is one of the most important of the early herbals. At a time when woodcuts of stylized representations of plants were freely copied from one herbal to another, it is obvious that the woodcuts in this work were produced from original drawings of the plants. The images in this book were "copied and recopied from book to book." The artistry of the images would not be surpassed for fifty years (Arber 1986, 23, 26).

The woodcuts were produced from original drawings.
Daffodil from Hortus Sanitatis Minor/Ein Gart der Gesundheit
Daffodil

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The author based his medical principals on the theory of the four elements and the four natures. His "garden of health" includes the powers and virtues of 435 plants readily available in apothecaries' shops. The herbal was written in German so that all would understand it.

Lily from Hortus Sanitatis Minor/Ein Gart der Gesundheit
Lily

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Mandrake from Hortus Sanitatis Minor/Ein Gart der Gesundheit
Mandrake

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Source:

Arber, Agnes. Herbals: Their Origin and Evolution. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1986.

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