DIO CHRYSOSTOM. Dionis Chrisostomi Prusensis philosophi ad Ilienses Ilii captivitatem non fuisse.

Cremona, Bernardino de Misintis and Caesar Parmensis., 22 July 1492

In 4° (193x144 mm), [19] l., wanting the blank leaf a1. Collation: a-b8; c6. (a1 blank, a2r Franciscus Philelphus' dedicatory letter to Leonardus Brunus Aretinus, a3v text, c3v Nicolaus Lucarus' letter to Borsius Cavitellus, c4r colophon). Colophon: Ingeniosissimi & Diligentis chalcographi Bernardini de misintis Papiensi / opera: una cum Cesare Parmense Dion Chrisostomus Pru / sensis in lucem elegans:splendens: & integre: rediit Cremone Impres- / sus: Anno ab incarnatione sacralissime virginis. 1492. undecimo Ka- / lendas Augustas. Roman types (80R), text on 34-38 lines, one historiated initial on 10 lines. Nineteenth-century binding of half-vellum. A very good copy, a tear restored in the inner margin of leaf a7.

First Latin translation by Franciscus Philelphus of Dio Chrysostom's famous Trojan Discourse (the eleventh in Dio's corpus). Thanks to his erudition and his pronounced dialectical skills, Dio Chrysostom (ca. 40 - ca. 120 CE), a major exponent of the Second Sophistic, demonstrates as false what Homer (and the tradition descending from him) says about Troy's conquest: he asserts that Troy never fell in Greek hands, claiming that the Trojans were the true winners of the war. In so doing, this work, containing a great deal of the criticism on Homer from Plato's time down, proves to be a rhetorical virtuosity, aimed at showing what could be done to disprove what everyone believed to be an incontrovertible fact. Relying on the rhetorical device of the recusatio, Dio re-elaborates a poetic text in order to convey a clear political message: as a Greek author of the Imperial period, Dio challenges the view of a cruel ending of the war opposing Greeks and Trojans, and, on the contrary, supports that of a final pacific agreement between them. In fact, transposing in mythical times the idea of an harmonic cohesion between the Eastern world, on the one side, and the Hellenic and Western world, on the other, Dio prefigured in the Homeric past a reality, that of the pax Romana, typical of his Age. This discourse is articulated in three parts: the first one is entirely devoted to Homer's errors and omissions in the historical reconstruction of the Trojan war; the second one dwells on the figure of Helen, who, instead of been captured, would have been regularly married to Paris; in the third part Dio, after a dense critique of the Homeric text, attributes the victory of the Trojans to their manifest military superiority. In the rhetorician's analysis, the war ended with the signing of a peace treaty safeguarding the rights of both opponents; after that, a small group of Trojan heroes led by Aeneas moved to the West, in order to found new colonies.

Bernardino de Misintis and Caesar Parmensis started working together in Brescia at the beginning of 1492, using a set of fonts provided by Angelo and Jacopo de Britannicis. After the publication of three books, the two typographers moved to Cremona, where they had around eight works published in the span of fifteenth months. Bernardino de Misintis then came back to Brescia, where he worked until 1502, while Caesar Parmensis stayed in Cremona, where he worked with Rafainus Ungaronus between 1494 and 1496.

IGI 3448; GW 8370;BMC VII, 956; G. Vagnone (ed.), Dione di Prusa, Troiano, or. XI, Rome 2003.