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Epistola ad Alexandrum de regimine sanitatis. Translated into English in two versions, the first in prose, the second in verse. Followed by a commentary, and a tract on the destruction of the See of Rome and the Coming of Antichrist. Holograph MS. by Jenkyn Gwynne, Surveyor to the Court of Echequer. The text is written over red rules in a neat Secretary hand, and this MS. is probably the copy prepared for the press. There is no title page: and the second leaf is blank. A foliation in pencil has been added. The work is dedicated to Sir Walter Mildmay [1520?-1589] who became Chancellor of the Exchequer in 1574. Of his book the translator in the Dedication says 'I ffounde writtyn in an olde text the transcrypte of the Epistle which Aristotiles wrate to the greate Emperor Alexander intitlede De conseruatione Sanitatis, and out of an Arabique booke callede Tyrocaesar translated into the Latyne by one Joannes Hispanus a famous clearik'. The final work contains various prophecies concerning the End of the World, with a strong anti-Catholic tendency. The 'De regimine sanitatis' [ff. 4-8v] is the medical portion of the pseudo-Aristotelian 'Secreta secretorum'. The prose version begins 'O Alexander monarche and Emperowre of the unyversall worlde consyder that as touchinge your bodye, you are corruptible...' It ends ... 'drawethe all thynges withe hit into the doongion of Obliuion.' The verse rendering begins [Fol. 9]: 'Naturall philosophers assentede all in one, that man ys made of four humours,/...' It ends [Fol. 16]: 'After the stomak annoyntede with all. With an oyntment called Sandall.'



Physical description

1 volume 40 ll. 4to. 27 x 21 cm. Original calf gilt binding, with centre arabesque ornament. Both silk ties wanting.

Acquisition note

Purchased 1898.

Finding aids

Database description transcribed from S.A.J. Moorat, Catalogue of Western Manuscripts on Medicine and Science in the Wellcome Historical Medical Library (London: Wellcome Institute for the History of Medicine, 1962-1973).

Ownership note

Inside the upper cover is a pasted-on slip inscribed 'The Earl of Westmoreland 1856' (i.e. John Fane, Eleventh Earl of Westmoreland [1784-1859]. The MS. is unpublished.


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Accession number

  • 4670