Also bound in the Mahieu Aesop Binder workshop, this collection of poems by Theocritus is one of only nine Greek texts known to have been owned by Laubespine. If more comfortable with Latin than Greek, he still might have appreciated this volume because of its printer, the renowned Aldus Manutius, whose work is also represented
in this exhibition by the Hypnerotomachia PoliphiliAldus was an enterprising editor of classical texts and printed many of them for the first time—for example, some of Theocritus’s bucolic verse included here. Furthermore, this edition serves as a specimen of Aldus’s first Greek typeface, a typographic innovation no less influential than the roman font in the Hypnerotomachia.

Theocritus (ca. 300–after 260 BCE)
Idyllia [Greek]
Venice: Aldus Manutius, February 1495/96
T. Kimball Brooker
Photography by Pixel Acuity