[HOOKE. Robert, ed.]

HOOKE’S RARE CONTINUATION OF THE TRANSACTIONS

[HOOKE. Robert, ed.] Philosophical Collections

London, Printed for John Martyn, [Moses Pitt, Richard Chiswell], for the Royal Society, 1679-82.

£20000

FIRST EDITION. Compete set of 7 parts in one volume, 210 pp., 6 folding plates, one full-page engraving (no. 5, p. 161), one half-page engraving (no. 4, p. 92), Bound in modern half calf and buckram over boards by Sangorsky & Sutcliffe. A fine copy. 

The polymath Robert Hooke (1635-1703) was authorised by the Council of the Royal Society to publish the Philosophical Collections after the official Transactions ceased publication on Henry Odenburg’s death in 1677. Ordinary publication of the Transactions was resumed in January 1682- 3. The purpose of the journal was to provide an up-to-date account of any sicientific topic, such as physical, anatomical, chemical, mechanical, astronomical, optical, natural-philosophical and natural-historical observations, and to advertise the publication of such books. Complete sets of these seven numbers are very uncommon. The present volume also includes anatomical and medical studies. Hooke here published important papers, especailly An optical discourse, which concerned a cure for short-sightedness. One finds in the present collection Leeuwenhoek’s discovery of spermatozoa through the study of animal semen; Lana’s “flying chariot”; Borelli’s De motu musculorum; Tyson’s Anatomy of a porpess (sic); and astronomical observations by Hevelius, Flamsteed, and Cassini on the eclipse of Jupiter by the moon in 1679 and 1681. Furthermore, major discoveries by Malpighi, Moxon, Thomas Burnett, Edmund Halley, Bernoulli, and Leibniz are published in this series for the first time. The plates show Bernier’s flying machine, Borelli’s underwater breathing apparatus, and a new lamp invented by Robert Boyle. William Brigg’s A new theory of vision, a discussion of the optic nerves, is accompanied by a plate illustrating a dissected eye; this detailed physiological study of vision motivated Newton to republish it in 1685 with his own introduction. The Royal Society, founded in 1660, is the oldest scientific society in Great Britain and one of the oldest in Europe. Founders and early members included the scientist Bishop John Wilkins, the philosopher Joseph Glanvill, the mathematician John Wallis and the architect Christopher Wren, who wrote the preamble of its charter.

Keynes, Hooke 24. Norman 1100 (listing only 3 folding plates). See PMM 148 for the ‘Philosophical Transactions’.

GUYBERT, Alexandre

A TRUE RARITY ON MENSURATION AND THE CONSTRUCTION OF DAMS AND CANALS IN C16TH SOUTHERN FRANCE

GUYBERT, Alexandre. Traicte familier pour toiser, mesurer et exactement calculler toute maçonnerie…

 Paris, Chez Charles Massé, 1580.

£3750

FIRST EDITION. 8vo, ff. 72, A-I8. Roman letter, sporadic Italic. Printer’s device on title page (a pyramid and motto “stans penetro”), floriated initials, headpieces and several numeric diagrams and calculations. Leaf edges browned and somewhat worn, dampstaining to foot of pages throughout. C19th autograph of “…Duchasseint” on front pastedown. In deliciously aged contemporary limp vellum with intact laces. A good copy of this very practical and handy masonry manual.

First edition of this handbook including computational methods in order to achieve exact measurement and proportions in masonry, geometry, architecture and building practices in general. These rules are applicable also to “turcies et levées” (dams and weirs). The Ancien régime’s Service des turcies et levées was a French organisation aimed to build, oversee and carry out maintenance on the numerous dams of the Loire and its canals, which helped regulating the stream of the river during exceptional rains, preventing flooding, and, above all, made navigation and trade via water possible across southern France. The sixteenth-century religious and civil wars disrupted this service putting at stake the safety of the population dwelling in the Loire valley. In order to settle this issue, in 1573 King Charles IX introduced the election of a local commissioner. The majors of Orléans, Bois, Tours and Amboise had to name three suitable candidates for each city, so that the King could then choose one among the twelve selected competitors. King Henry III changed this system and appointed this task to the General of Finances, based in Orléans, assisted by two commissioners from this city. However, the French Department of Finances soon absorbed the role of the General and usurped the power of the local commissioners elected by the citizens of Orléans. This usurpation required the intervention of the King in 1588. The author of the present work defines himself as “King’s counsellor” and “Eleu” of Orléans, that is, the person elected in the provincial election to become a general Assessors of Subsidies, such as “aides and tailles”, meaning “state grants and land taxes”.

Extremely rare. We could only trace about ten copies: nine in Europe and just one in the US. No copy in the British Library.

USTC 30305

EUCLID

EUCLID. The Elements of Euclid; With Select Theorems out of Archimedes…

London, Printed for W. Innys, T. Longman and T. Shewell…, and M. Senex…, 1747.

£300

8vo, pp. xiv (ii) 240 (iv) 68, A-U8 Z 4. Lacking frontispiece portrait. Title-page vignette of putti playing a trumpet and using a compass and a ruler while reading Euclid’s Elements, motto “hinc omnia”; 5 folding engraved plates of many figures. Archimedes’ Theorems have a separate dated title page and pagination, but the Register is continuous. Engraved vignette of a cone, cylinder and a sphere with motto “Una tribus Ratio est”. Large Cheshunt College Library bookplate on front fly with ink shelf mark and label of the Newport-Pagnel Evangelical Institution, book presented by “an anonymous friend”, on upper pastedown. In contemporary gilt-ruled calf, title on red morocco label to spine. Front joint to cover cracked but holding.

William Whiston (1667-1752) was an Anglican priest and mathematician who in 1703 succeeded Isaac Newton as Lucasian professor and, in the following year, he abridged and published the Elements of Euclid for the use of students at Cambridge. Whiston re-elaborated the work on Euclid of the Belgian Jesuit mathematician André Tacquet (1612-60), who wrote many good elementary texts designed as mathematics textbooks for Jesuit colleges. His Elementa geometriae (1654) was his most popular teaching work. This book was essentially constructed from Euclid’s Elements with material from Archimedes. It was a significant piece of work because of the clarity Tacquet demonstrated in presenting the material. Many editions of Elementa geometriae were produced over the next 100 years. For example, the present work appeared in a third edition published in London in 1727. Palladino writes about Tacquet’s Classes of measures: “The classical definitions of ratio and proportion, defined respectively by the third and the fifth definitions of Book V of Euclid’s Elements, were subjected to a rigorous examination in the seventeenth century: among the critics and revisers of those definitions [was] André Tacquet (whose definition of ‘equal reasons’ has inspired generations of mathematicians). … Tacquet devised refined procedures to figure out the ‘equality of reasons’ by approximation.” F. Palladino, On the theory of proportions in the seventeenth century. Two noteworthy contributions: ‘Cuts of rational numbers’ by the Galilean G. A. Borelli and ’Classes of measures’ by the Jesuit A. Tacquet (Italian), Nuncius Ann. Storia Sci. 6 (2) (1991), 33-81.

[RUSSIA] “THE GREAT WAY”

THE MAKING OF MODERN RUSSIA: A STUNNING PHOTO ALBUM SHOWING LANDSCAPES AND VIEWS FROM THE  EARLY TRANS-SIBERIAN RAILWAY

“The Great Way”: Views of Siberia and the Siberian Railway.

Krasnoyarsk, I.R. Tomashkevich and M.B. Axelrode and Co., 1899.

£5000

Photo album (30x36cm), pp. (iv), 124 [= ill.]. Cyrillic type. Translation of subtitle: “Issue No. 1: From the river Ob to the river Yenisei and Tomsk branch. 124 views of the most important railroads, buildings, cities, villages, views of foreigners and scenic areas adjacent to the line. etc., with a description of them, compiled by V. A.; photos by Tomashkevich”; [auth. pref. Akselrode and Tomashkevich]. In a crimson buckram binding, beautifully illustrated on front cover in colours, with gilt title. Embossed gilt lettering to spine. Double blind panels and central tooling on rear cover. Only some very light spotting on initial three leaves. A perfect copy.

125 years ago, in 1891, work for the Trans-Siberian Railway began. Still today it is considered one of the greatest infrastructure projects in the history of mankind. A railway across Eurasia not only made the East closer, but also contributed to the creation of many cities, without which it is impossible to imagine Russia. It only took about 25 years to complete the railway. Created in Krasnoyarsk by I. R. Tomashkevich and M. B. Axelrode, this photo album was meant to proudly advertise and promote this difficult engineering enterprise by emulating the American example. It also instigated new communication policies aimed at the cultural unification of the Russian nation, as pointed out by the scholar Mikhaylova Natalia in “Confectionery trade cards from the series ‘The views of Siberia and the Siberian railway’ as part of mass visual culture of the late 19 early 20 century Russia” in ART&CULT, No. 18, 2-2015 (abstract: A series of trade cards “The views of Siberia and the Siberian railway” demonstrates some key points of the mass visual culture of the late XIXth and early XXth centuries. The series reflects the vision on Siberian Railroad and the symbolic appropriation of Siberia by a Central Russia resident): A simple comparison of the Einem cards [chromolithographs] with the postcards from the album indicates that the latter with no doubts served as a source for an unknown artist of ‘Einem’This method of memorialization of a large state-sponsored construction project had foreign analogues: in the late 1860s an album Great West Illustrated devoted to the construction of the Pacific railroad was published in the United States. However, the significance of the Tomashkevich-Axelrode album for its time was far more profound than just publishing the documents on Trans-Siberian Railway. It played an important role in promoting this ambitious construction project, both in Russia and abroad. The album was presented at the Exposition Universelle of 1900 in Paris and, along with the famous panoramas of P. Piasecky, was meant to shape a visual image of a new large-scale Russian undertaking in European audience. A series of trade cards produced by the partnership Einem may be regarded as the canonical mass-edition of this album. A world’s fair in Paris was widely covered in the press of the period, and the Russian public was well informed about the exhibits presented in the Russian pavilion that were dedicated to the construction of the Trans-Siberian Railway. It is likely that the album by Tomashkevich-Axelrode had a high cultural status. Those purchasing Einem candy boxes with a card from the Siberian series had thus an opportunity to share the experience of those who were able to visit the Exposition Universelle.”

 

EUCLID (CLAVIUS, Christoph, Ed.)

Elementorum Libri XV. Accessit XVI. De Solidorum Regularium comparatione. … 

Rome, Apud Vincentium Accoltum, 1574.

£1,350

8vo, two volumes, of which only the second one is here available. The title is nearly identical to the first one, reading “Posteriores libri sex a x ad xv. Accessit xvi, de Solidorum Regularium comparatione…, ff. 300, A-2O8 2P4. Roman and Italic letter, very little Greek. Title within woodcut architectural frame topped by the emblem of the Society of Jesus, text enclosed in plain rule border, large woodcut printer’s device on verso of final leaf. Decorated woodcut initials and tailpieces. Several diagrams in text. Early marginalia on top of t-p. Upper corner of last three leaves skilfully repaired, no affecting the text. Occasional light spotting throughout. Ink title inscribed by early hand on foot fore-edge. In modern blind-ruled calf over boards, spine in compartments with red morocco label and gilt lettering. An excellent copy, fresh and crisp withal.

This is the second volume only of this 1574 edition of Euclid’s Elementa edited by Christoph Clavius (1537-1612), the Bamberg Jesuit and professor of mathematics at the Collegium Romanum, who supplemented it with his monumental commentary. This Roman publication represents one of the greatest achievements in the history of Renaissance mathematics. “His contemporaries called Clavius ‘the Euclid of the 16th century’. The ‘Elements’, which is not a translation, contains a vast quantity of notes collected from previous commentators and editors, as well as some good criticisms and elucidations of his own” (DSB iii, p. 311).

Adams E-985; de Backer/Somm. II, 1213; Duarte 42; Hoffmann II, 44; STC Italian 238; Steck, pp. 77-78; Thomas-Stanford 19.