1483 Venetian Imprint of the Institutes [Justinian I, Emperor of the East (483-565 CE)]. [Accorso, Francisco (Accursius) (c.1182-c.1260), Glossator]. [Institutiones]. [Venice: Ottaviano Scoto, 18 January 1483]. Collation: a-p8.  ff. Lacking initial blank. Text in parallel columns. Main text surrounded by linear gloss. Folio (16-1/2" x 11"). Contemporary half vellum over wooden boards, brass clasps and catches, "Instituta" in early hand to front board, raised bands to spine. Light rubbing to boards, heavier rubbing to extremities with some wear to spine ends and corners, partial vertical crack through center of front board, hinges cracked, a few partial cracks to text block, a few signatures loose. Printed throughout in red and black in 62-line Gothic type, large red and black printer device to verso of final leaf. Light toning, occasional faint stains, light foxing and later annotations to a few leaves, upper corner of each leaf numbered in another later hand, small wear hole (paper flaw?) to lower corner of leaf l1 (Fol. 78) with negligible loss to text. An appealing copy. $18,500. * An uncommon edition. With the Glossa Ordinaria of Accursius. Along with the Digest, Code and Novels, the Institutes is one of the writings known collectively as the Corpus Juris Civilis. Intended for students, the Institutes is an elementary treatise on Roman private law. Like its companion volumes, its subsequent influence on European jurisprudence is difficult to underestimate. It received a great deal of commentary during the medieval and early modern eras. The first significant commentator was Accorso (Accursius), a professor of law at the University of Bologna and a leading figure in the revival of classical jurisprudence. He examined every extant note and commentary when he prepared his epochal edition of the Institutes, Digest and Code. This massive effort eliminated much of the obscurity and contradiction introduced by earlier writers. His gloss on this edition, which superseded all previous attempts, was often cited as the Glossa Ordinaria or Magistralis. It remained definitive until its 1583 revision by Denis Godefroy. OCLC locates 4 copies of this imprint, 1 in North America (Library of Congress). Goff, Incunabula in American Librar.
Book number 68705