King's College London
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Homer's Opera

Fore-edge lettering of Homer’s name in GreekFore-edge lettering of Homer’s name in GreekPrinted text with an inscription indicating that the book was purchased from the funds of a bequest left to Eton College by Henry GodolphinPrinted text with an inscription indicating that the book was purchased from the funds of a bequest left to Eton College by Henry GodolphinCover of Homer’s Opera in red morocco bindingCover of Homer’s Opera in red morocco bindingBookplates of Eton College and King’s College LondonBookplates of Eton College and King’s College LondonThe earliest mark of provenance on this copy of Homer’s Opera, printed in Florence in 1488-9 is in the form of Homer's name inscribed on the fore-edge in Greek.

Henry Godolphin, (1648-1732), provost of Eton College and dean of St Paul’s Cathedral, bequeathed money to support the acquisition of books for Eton College’s library. 

This is indicated by a manuscript annotation on leaf 1a which reads: Liber Collegii Etonensis [E..pt.] pecuniam quam Testamento legavit Henricus Godolphin S.J.P. jusdem Colli Prepositus. 1732. 

The shelf mark 'B,0. 2 J0.' is also found in the top left hand corner of the first blank fly leaf verso.

During Eton College’s period of ownership the book was likely to have acquired its present binding, which is of red morocco leather on wooden boards, with gilt tooling on the front, back and spine.

There are raised bands on the spine and the title 'Homeri Opera GR' and 'Florent 1488' gilt tooled into the spine. It also has marbled endpapers.

The Eton College bookplate, which reads:

Collegium Beatae Mariae De Etona is on the front pastedown, opposite the King’s bookplate which itself records that it was: The Gift of a grateful fellow in recognition of the devotion and outstanding services to the college of Robert Hutton, Librarian from 1931 to 1958.

Link to King's College London catalogue record:
Homer. Opera [Greek]. Florence: Bernardus Nerlius and Nerius Nerlius, [not before 13 Jan. 1488/89]
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