The Anatomy of Melancholy – Original 17th Century Frontispiece Engraving

Original 17th Century engraving: allegorical frontispiece to the Robert Burton’s work The Anatomy of Melancholy engraved by Jakob Christof LE BLON (1667-1741).

Robert Burton presents his work under the pseudonym of Democratus Junior as a medical textbook on the subject of a range of mental states including what would today be called clinical depression, but also addresses a wide ranging variety of topics in a tone that is often satirical.

Single Sheet Engraving on old handlaid paper.
Dimensions: 16 x 37 cm
Condition: As shown.  Spotting and soiling, cut to the plate, upper left corner missing.

Fascinating period annotations on the back appear to be a reader’s notes or critique of the book and its author.

Texts read: Democritus Abderites 2. Zelotypia 3. Solitudo 4. Inamorato 5. Hypocondriacus 6. Superstitiosus 7. Maniacus 8. Borage 9. Hellebor 10. Democritus Junior
THE ANATOMY OF MELANCHOLY What it is, with all the kinds, causes, symptoms, prognostics, and several cures of it. In three Partitions, with their several Sections, numbers, and subsections. Philosophically, medicinally, Historically, opened and cut up. By Democritus Junior With a Satyrical Preface conducing to the following Discourse. The Sixth Edition, corrected and augmented by the Author. Omne tulit punctum, qui miscit utile dulce. London Printed & to be sold by Hen. Crips & Lodo Lloyd at their shop in Popes-head Alley. 1652