VALLA, LAURENTIUS. 1406-1457.
Elegantiae de linguae latinae. Venice: Philippus Pincius, February 8, 1492.
Folio (300 x 210 mm). 89 leaves (of 90). 59 lines, initial spaces, unrubricated. Modern quarter morocco. Lacking a1 (4-word title leaf). Minor marginal dampstain, darker at top corner towards the end and last few leaves lightly worn, final leaf with fore-edge margin reinforces and two repairs to top edge.
INCUNABLE EDITION OF AN IMPORTANT WORK ON CLASSICAL GRAMMAR. Valla made a thorough critical examination of historical Latin grammar. His work was the inspiration for many humanists to reform their Latin prose style to a more classical and Ciceronian style on a regulated basis. Following Valla's example, the humanists sought to purge their style of post-classical words and corruptions and became stylistically very different from Christian medieval Latin. Valla's scholarship allowed him to denounce the Donation of Constantine as an 8th century forgery of 4th century Latin. Goff V-65; Hain-Copinger 15818.