Description[Featured Lot] Newton, Isaac. Chronology of the Ancient Kingdoms Amended. To which is Prefix'd A Short Chronicle from the First Memory of Things in Europe, to the Conquest of Persia by Alexander the Great. Dublin: For George Risk, George Ewing, and William Smith, 1728. 8vo. A6+¹1 (Subscriber's List), B-2A8. x, ,208, 217-378p. Modern calf, spine bands, title gilt, new endpapers, stamps of MaryKnoll College on t.p.,foxing, third folding plate incomplete and worn. 3 folding plates (the third only partial). First Dublin Edition. From the Krown & Spellman Collection.
Krown & Spellman retail: $750
"Leibnitz in 1710 had attacked Newton's philosophy, and in a letter written to the Princess of Wales in 1715 he made a number of charges against the religious views of the English. George I heard of the attack, and expressed a wish that Newton should reply, and he was thus brought into contact with the princess; in the course of conversation with her, he mentioned a system of ancient chronology composed by him when in Cambridge, and shortly afterwards gave her a copy. The Abbe Conti, under a strict promise of secrecy, was allowed to take a copy of it. On his return to France Conti violated his promise and gave it to Freret, who wrote a refutation and then had it published without Newton's permission. Newton had neglected to answer two letters on the subject. The work was printed in 1725, and led to various discussions, in consequence of which Newton consented to prepare his complete work for the press. He died in 1727, however, before the preparation was complete, and the book was issued by Pemberton in 1728 under the title of 'The Chronology of Ancient Kingdoms Amended.' The book contains an attempt to determine the dates of ancient events from astronomical considerations. Its positive results are not of great importance, chiefly because Newton was not in a position to distinguish between mythical and historical events. Thus great attention is paid to the date of the Argonautic expedition. Newton, however, indicates the manner in which astronomy might be used to verify the views on the chronological points derived in the main from Ptolemy, which were held in his time. These views have since that date been proved, by the Babylonish and Egyptian records, to be on the whole correct. "
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