Among the treasures of Medical Museion in Copenhagen are rare books such as the first edition by Anutius Foesius of the collected works of Hippocrates, presented as one volume with eight sections.
The book was beautifully printed in Greek and Latin by the Wechel heirs in Frankfurt in 1595 and is considered the best edition of Hippocrates prior to the ten volumes by É. Littré, published in 1839-1861 in Greek and French.
Jacques Jouanna has written an interesting article on the achievements of Foesius in ”Lire les Médecins Grecs à la Renaissance”, Actes du colloque international de Paris. De Boccard Édition-Diffusion. Paris 2004.
In the article Jouanna points to a remarkable difference between the first and the following editions consisting in the replacement of Foesius’ original address ”Admonitio ad Lectorem” with a letter from Petrus Laphileus. By this act the editor deleted Foesius’ acknowledgement of the access he had enjoyed to some very valuable commentaries by the Professor of Medicine at Heidelberg, Jean Opsopoeus.
Medical Museion’s book can add to this information, as the ”Admonitio ad Lectorem” was already suppressed in this specimen in favor of the letter from Petrus Laphileus.
This finding is confirmed by two other first editions held at The Royal Library of Copenhagen: one has the original version and one the replacement as seen below.
Jacques Jouanna reminds us that in the 16th and 17th centuries every reprint was a new edition.
The three Danish books extends this to the fact that even first editions can differ on an important point.