Philosophical Treatises in the Library of Bohuslav of Lobkowicz and Hassenstein

Pages 33–37
Citation KARFÍK, Filip. Philosophical Treatises in the Library of Bohuslav of Lobkowicz and Hassenstein. Acta Musei Nationalis Pragae – Historia litterarum. Prague: National Museum, 2007, 52(1-4), 33–37. ISSN 0036-5351. Also available from:
Acta Musei Nationalis Pragae – Historia litterarum | 2007/52/1-4

Based on a yet unpublished new catalogue of all preserved manuscripts, incunabula and postincunabula from Hassenstein’s library by Dr. K. Boldan, the paper examines to what extent philosophical literature was represented in it. The author groups Hassenstein’s philosophical books in four categories on chronological lines: (1) ancient Greek and Latin pagan writers, (2) ancient Greek and Latin Christian writers, (3) mediaeval Latin writers and (3) Renaissance writers. His overview shows that Hassenstein owned philosophical and theological literature in all these categories. (1) Ancient Greek and Latin philosophers are represented by almost every important philosophical writer known in Hassenstein’s times, both in manuscripts and in printed editions. (2) There is a rather scanty collection of patristic authors, both Greek and Latin, in manuscripts as well as in printed editions. The 16th century printed catalogue by Thomas Mitis, however, shows that there were more of them. Most probably the collection suffered considerable losses in this category in the 16th century when a number of manuscripts were on loan. (3) As for the mediaeval theological literature, Hassenstein owned an impressive collection of the most important of them (with by far the greatest number by Albertus Magnus and Thomas Aquinas) as well as a selection of minor mediaeval theological writers. Almost all these mediaeval writings are printed editions (there are two manuscripts of Albertus Magnus). (4) The collection of philosophical literature of the 15th and early 16th century is quite representative for this period, including both humanist and scholastic writers from different schools. This category consists of printed editions only. The author concludes that Hassenstein took a systematic interest in acquiring books with philosophical contents, probably not only for his own use but also for the use of his humanistic circle.

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