Home > History of Wine > A Visual History of 16th Century Herbal Illustrations of Vitis Vinifera

A Visual History of 16th Century Herbal Illustrations of Vitis Vinifera

Herbals are early books which catalogue and illustrate plants.  They reveal the close link between the development of botany and medicine.   In conducting research on 16th century references to grapevines, I came across illustrations of the common European grapevine Vitis Vinifera.  In this post I feature 11 illustrations from the years 1540 to 1595.  Some of the illustrations have been recycled by a single author such as Leonhard Fuchs whereas others are copied such as with Geoffroy Linocier and Antoine Du Pinet de Noroy.  Several illustrations show the root, vine, leaves, and grapes whereas others are clippings.  There are also woodsy vines, curling tendrils, delicately veined leaves, and beautiful grape clusters.  I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

De Vite. [1]

Vitis Vinifera. Wijngaerr. [2]

De Arboribus Vitis Vinifera. [3]

Vitis vinifera. [4]

Vitis Vinifera. [5]

Vitis Vigne cultiuee. [6]


Vitis vinifera. [7]

Vitis. The Manured Vine. [8]

Vitis Vinifera. [9]

Vitis Vinifera. [10]


Vitis vinifera. Weinreb. [11]

[1] Egenolphus, Christianus. Botanicon. 1540. URL: http://books.google.com/books?id=32raAW9Bjq4C&pg=PP2#v=onepage&q&f=false
[2] Fuchs, Leonhard. Den nieuwen Herbarins, dat is, d’breck van den cruyden(etc.). 1543. URL: http://books.google.com/books?id=WndVAAAAcAAJ&pg=PT7#v=onepage&q&f=false
[3] Lonitzer, Adam. Naturalis historiae opus nouum. 1551. URL:  http://books.google.com/books?id=h7wei20VewMC&pg=PP1#v=onepage&q&f=false
[4] Dioscorides, Pedanius. De medica materia. 1552. URL: http://books.google.com/books?id=6sc7AAAAcAAJ&pg=PT6#v=onepage&q&f=false
[5] Mattioli, Pietro Andrea. Medici Senensis Commentarii, in libros sex Pedacii Dioscoridis Anazarbei De medica materia. 1554. URL: http://books.google.com/books?id=tBE8oBZ2_ioC&pg=PR4#v=onepage&q&f=false
[6] Dodoens, Rembert.  Histoire des Plantes. 1557. URL: http://books.google.com/books?id=edRcLIuF_ugC&pg=PP1#v=onepage&q&f=false
[7] de Noroy, Antoine Du Pinet. Historia Plantarum. 1567. URL: http://books.google.com/books?id=6DM6AAAAcAAJ&pg=PT3#v=onepage&q&f=false
[8] Dodoens, Rembert. A Nievve Herball, or Historie of Plantes. 1578. URL: http://books.google.com/books?id=ifxNAAAAcAAJ&pg=PP7#v=onepage&q&f=false
[9] Linocier, Geoffroy. L’Histoire des Plantes. 1584. URL: http://books.google.com/books?id=0Sw6AAAAcAAJ&pg=PP1#v=onepage&q&f=false
[10] Durante, Castore. Herbario Nuouo. 1585. URL: http://books.google.com/books?id=AcMYLq6sNK8C&pg=PP1#v=onepage&q&f=false
[11] Fuchs, Leonhart. Plantarum et stirpium icones. 1595. URL: http://books.google.com/books?id=5Cs6AAAAcAAJ&pg=PR1#v=onepage&q&f=false

  1. August 20, 2013 at 9:26 am

    Hi Aaron

    Not yet had time to go through your latest posts but found some interesting stuff yesterday in Ridley’s Wine and Spirit Circular from 1877-78 re gauging and the lines between custom and practice and frauds at the London Docks. Would you like references? Can you get hold of Ridleys on-line??

    If not, I could send you my brief extracts and could follow up if necessary. The Guildhall Library doesn’t allow photography or copying without expensive permits alas.



    Sent from my iPad

    • August 23, 2013 at 6:46 am

      Good morning Graham,

      That gauging fraud sounds quite interesting. I just got back from summer vacation so I’ll get back to you in a day or two.



  1. August 26, 2013 at 12:17 pm
  2. February 2, 2016 at 4:49 pm

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