GIRALDI, Giglio Gregorio
Simeonis Sethi, magistri Antiochiae, Syntagma per literarum ordinem de cibariorum facultate, Lilio Gregorio Gyraldo,... interprete.Basel: Michael Isingrinus, 1538.
First printed edition of Seth's Byzantine encyclopedia of foods, nutrition, and diatetics from plants and animals, with Greek text and Latin translation by scholar and poet Giglio Gregorio Giraldi. Simeon Seth was an 11th-century Jewish Byzantine doctor and scholar originally from Antioch, who became grand Chamberlain (protovestiarius) under Michael VII Doukas. "Simeon Seth was the great Orientalist of Byzantine medicine... [he] selected the best, not only from the Greek materia medica but also from Persian, Arabic, and Indian sources" (Owsei Temkin, "Byzantine Medicine: Tradition and Empiricism", Dumbarton Oaks Papers 16  95-115). Seth was a contemporary of the monk, philosopher, politician and historian Michael Psellos. His work has been called a revision of Psellos's Syntagma de alimentorum facultatibus or De cibarium facultate, "On the Properties of Foods"), which criticizes Galen and emphasizes eastern medical traditions. Psellos wrote the work for the emperor Constantine IX Monomachos, and Seth revised it for Michael VII Doukas, adding a brief introduction (the proem.), some corrections to the text, and omitting some chapters. The work considers some two hundred and twenty-eight plants and animals. Digital facsimile from the Internet Archive at this link.
Subjects: BOTANY, BYZANTINE MEDICINE, Byzantine Zoology, Encyclopedias, NUTRITION / DIET, ZOOLOGY