Maggs Bros Ltd

La Science des Longitudes

MORIN Jean Baptiste and; DULIRIS Leonard (1647)

£4500.00  [First Edition]

de Jean Baptiste Morin, [...] Reduite en exacte et facile pratiquepratique par luy-mesme, sur le globe celeste... avec la censure de la nouvelle théorie et pratique du secret des longitudes du père Léonard Duliris, Recollet.

First Edition. Small 4to [201 x155mm]., [8], 62 pp. Title-page a little closely shaved at the lower edge (not touching the imprint). 18th-century mottled calf, spine tooled in gilt, green morocco label. Paris: aux dépens de l'autheur... chez lequel le livre se vend: ensemble chez Iacques Villery, libraire,

[Bound with]:MORIN(Jean Baptiste) and DULIRIS (Leonard). Response a l'Apologie scandaleuse du P. Leonard Durilis[sic] recollect, touchant la science des longitudes; pour les navigations. First Edition. Small 4to., 88 pp.

Paris: aux dépens de l'autheur... chez lequel le livre se vend: ensemble chez Iacques Villery, libraire, et chez Iean le Brun au globe céleste, 1648

Rare - OCLC does not record any copies of the first work in the USA.Two copies are recorded in France, two in the U.K [BL and Cambridge], one at the National Library of Spain and another at Herzog August library in Germany. The second work is recorded at Harvard, University of Frieburg and the Sainte-Geneviève Library in France.

Two rare works on longitude by Jean Baptiste Morin and Leonard Duliris - the later having gained practical experience of longitudinal calculations on a voyage to Canada.

Jean Baptiste Morin (1583-1656) was, like many savants of this period, talented in a number of disciplines including mathematics, medicine, hermeticism and astrology. Morin was a correspondent of Descartes and Marin Mersenne (1588-1648) but his unfortunate approach to controversy and society meant that few people were endeared to him. In the dedication to the first work in this volume (which is addressed to Cardinal Mazarin), Morin complains of Dulirs's plagiarism and, at the end of the second work, he lambastes him as a lunatic and sings his own praises as a "'nom fort bien cogneu dans toute l'Europe & plus loin pour toutes les sciences des Astres: dont ie rends graces à Dieu".

There are various mentions in the text of Duliris's voyage to Canada.Leonard Duliris was a Franciscan Recollect (an order at the time excluded from French territory) and missionary, who was fascinated by the problems of how to determine longitude. In 1645 he sailed to Canada, where he observed the solar eclipse of 24 August, as well as making some very inaccurate calculations of longitude. On his return he published La théorie des longitudes(Paris, 1647) and it is this work which attracts Morin's ire. (see the article by R.P. Broughton 'Astronomy in seventeenth-century Canada' in JRASC.75. 175B.)

At the end of the first work are advertisements for other works by Morin available from him at his house.La Science des longitudes was reissued in 1657 with a cancel slip pasted over the original imprint (copy at Harvard).

Neither of these works are recorded by ABPC.

[Also bound in this volume]:

ZARLINO( Giuseppe). De vera anni forma, sive de recta eius emendatione. First Edition. Small 4to., [8], 134, [2 (blank)] pp., numerous woodcut tables and diagrams and a woodcut plate inserted at p. 75 (to create a volvelle for woodcut on p. 75). F3 cropped at foot with slight loss of text of table on verso, title-leaf and prelims soiled and damp-stained, without final blank leaf. Venice: in officina Varisciana, 1580. Rare. OCLC records Yale and Columbia, two libraries in Germany and another in the Netherlands.Zarlino (ca. 1517-1590) who is best known as a musical theorist, wrote three works on calendars and dates, including a short pamphlet on the year and day of Christ's death.

WEIDLER,( Johann Friedrich). Institutiones geometriae subterraneae.First Edition. Small 4to., 80pp., with four engraved plates and a number of woodcut tables. Wittemberg: widow Gerdes, 1726.

Weidler (1691-1755) was a mathematician and astronomer chiefly known for his Bibliographia astronomica, and his short Latin works which were translated into Russian and printed in St. Petersburg & Moscow in the 1760s. Rare. This technical work on mining was reprinted in 1751 (copy at Harvard). This first edition is known in some copies in Germany and two in England.

SEGNER( Janós Andrós). Ad... Georgium Hambergerum dissertatio epistolica. qua regulam Harrioti de modo ex aequationum signis numerum radicum... demonstrare, simulque rationem structurae instrumenti novi... exponere conatur Ioannes Andreas Segner. Small 4to., 4to (202 x 150mm.) 23pp. A little foxed. Jena: C.F. Buch, [1728?].

The first work by Segner, dated at end 7 September 1718. This may be a misprint for 1728, the date given by various sources for this pamphlet (e.g. DSB).

The Hungarian Segner (1704-1777) who came Poszony (known as Pressburg, and now Bratislava in Slovakia) is best remembered as the father of the water turbine. He studied medicine at Jena, where Hamberger (1697-1755), himself the author of a popular Elementa physices was professor, qualified as a doctor and became a noted figure in German intellectual life and a prolific writer on medicine, science and astronomy.

The Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie (33, 609) states that Segner enrolled in the University of Jena in 1725 and that this work was edited in that year. In 1718 he would have been only 14 years old, and one supposes still at the Hungarians school in Poszony.

Harriot's rule, sometimes called Descartes rule, is named after the English mathematician Thomas Harriot who wrote on navigation and equations. Sections 1-17 of the pamphlet deal with equations and in section 18, in which references are made to 'figurae' or illustrations, Segner proceeds to discuss his new instrument for describing conic sections. No 'figures' are present in this copy, neither does the handful of copies listed on KVK contain any.

Provenance: Earls of Macclesfield, south library bookplate on the front pastedown, armorial blind stamp to the first few pages and a manuscript contents list on the front flyleaf. A typically handsome volume from the Macclesfield library which was noted for it's strong collection of works on science.

Stock Code: 67396