Tragoediae (1503)

Euripides, Tragoediae

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  In 1501 Aldus began to publish a series of books in octavo format that would become the quintessential Aldine editions. He called them 'libelli portatiles' ('portable little books'), and they consisted of the works of noted authors stripped of the commentaries that traditionally surrounded them, printed in a clear and simple italic font (80mm) with fewer ligatures than the lovely typefaces of the 1490s. The first to appear was the 1502 Sophocles; Wadham has the 1503 editio princeps of Euripides in two volumes, including the great Dutch scholar Nicolas Heinsius' (1620-81) personal annotated copy of vol.1. Aldus' edition included seventeen of Euripides' eighteen extant plays; the Electra was not published until 1545.  
Text kindly provided, especially for this exhibition, by Peter Thonemann