Description

    First Edition of Gilbert's Work on the
    Element of Earth

    William Gilbert. De mundo-nostro Sublunari Philosophia Nova. Opus posthumum... Amsterdam: Ludovico [Lowijs] Elzevier, 1651. First edition. Quarto. *4, **3, A-2R4. [14], 316, [4] pages. Elzevier device on title-page [Rahir #19], title-page in red and black, decorated initials; text cuts, folding map. Bound in full old dark brown calf, rebacked in modern calf, title on red morocco label, edges speckled red, endpapers renewed; bookplate of John Crerar Library, old owner's name on title-page in ink dated 1653 (and crossed-out), some pencil notes throughout. Still, a very good copy.
    STCN 165104. Houzeau and Lancaster 2871. Willems 1128. DSB V, 400-1. Berghman 383. Rahir 1146. From the Krown & Spellman Collection.
    Please visit HA.com/6117 for an extended description of this lot.


    More Information:

    Gilbert, William. De mundo-nostro Sublunari Philosophia Nova. Opus posthumum... Amsterdam: Ludovico [Lowijs] Elzevier, 1651. 4to. *4,**3,A-2R4. [14],316,[4]pp. Old calf, rebacked, title on red morocco label, edges speckled red, endpapers renewed; bookplate of John Crerar Library, old owner's name on t.p. dated 1653 crossed-out, some pencil notes, very good copy. Elzevier device on t.p. [Rahir #19], t.p. in red and black, decorated initials; text cuts, folding map. First Edition. Gilbert, William, M.D.,1540-1603, physician and scientist. "He lived on St. Peter's Hill in London, was appointed physician to Queen Elizabeth, and attained considerable practice. He became censor of the College of Physicians in 1581, and was appointed to that office in seven subsequent years. He was treasurer of the college for nine years, and in 1600 was elected president. In that year he published in London 'De Magnete, Magneticisque corporibus, et de Magno Magnete Tellure, Physiologia Nova.' It was the first great physical book published in England, and has fulfilled for its author Dryden's prophecy: 'Gilbert shall live till loadstones cease to draw.' His merit was immediately recognised both in England and on the continent, where he won eulogy from Galileo. Bacon mentions Gilbert with respect in the 'Novum Organum' (ed. Leyden, 1650, pp. 263-5 and elsewhere)." DNB

    "When the younger William Gilbert collected his half brother's papers for presentation to Prince Henry and eventual publication, he divided them into two sections. The first of these, "Physiologiae nova contra Aristotelem," is an expansion of the cosmology of the "De magnete'; the second, 'Nova meteorolgia contra Arsitotelem," follows the general pattern of Aristotle's 'Meteorolgy'...At the beginning of the "Physiologia nova" Gilbert denied the existence of the four terrestrial elements--earth, air, fire, warter--and replaced them with one element, earth. This earth was the one substance from which all terrestrial bodies were made its primary attribute was its magnetic property...The second part of the 'De mundo,' "Nova meteorologia," contains Gilbert's discussion of comets, the Milky way, clouds, winds, the rainbow, the origin of springs and rivers, and the nature of the sea and tides..."

    DSB. STCN 165104. Houzeau & Lancaster 2871. Willems 1128. DSB V,400-1. Berghman 383. Rahir 1146.



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    April, 2015
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