Description

    Stephan [Istvan] Hatvani. Introductio Ad Principia Philosophiae Solidioris... Cui Observatio Elevationis Pol Debrecinensis. Debecen: Gregory Kallai, 1757. Krown & Spellman retail: $1250. First Edition. 8vo. )(8, A-T8. xv, [1 errata], 304p. Folding table at end, text cuts. Contemporary 1/2 calf over marbled boards, spine banded, some wear, joints cracking; ownership inscription "Samuelis Cseb Szombatis" dated March 29, 1776 in Debrecen on f.f.e.p. note on rear blank in same hand. From the Krown & Spellman Collection.

    More Information:

    "Hatavani (1718-1786) was one of the well-known professors of the Calvinist College of Debreen. His interesting and colorful character stirred the imagination of writers and poets, who invented stories about Hatavani's scientific experiments in order to attribute [to] him magic power. He got the name Hungarian Faust... Hatavani was the first professor at the Calvinist College who made physical and chemical expoeriments at his lectures. He lectured on mathematics, geometry, philosophy, physics, and astronomy..." [Tunde Kanotor-Varga, Mathematical gems of Debreen...] He studied mathematics with J. & D. Bernoulli.

    This is more important of the two books he wrote on mathematics. It is also the first Hungarian work on statistics. He presents tables for births in Debrecen for the years 1750 to 1753. Finding the mortality rate to be higher than in other European countries he seeks medical reasons.

    This first edition is quite rare. Even the Hungarian National Library only reports the 1990 reprint. Risse 45.1 (Generalis); 331. Not in BL Hungarian, Horvath, or OCLC.

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    Auction Dates
    April, 2015
    16th-23rd Thursday-Thursday
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