A circa late 18th/early 19th Century manuscript school child's exercise book,



72 pages of manuscript pen & ink mathematical based entries in neat copperplate handwriting, entries include interest, equation of payment, weights & measures, comparative arithmetic, geometrical progression, permutation etc., contemporary card wrappers, sheathed in a later brown paper protective cover with a pencil note "Old Copy Book". London, John Fairburn. c.1790-1807.

There is a rudimentary engraving depicting 'The Lovely Archer', printed by John Fairburn, Minories, London. Fairburn was a bookseller and print-maker whose shop was located at various locations on Minories c.1790-1830s. Minories is still a main thoroughfare in East London, located near Aldgate. Signed "W. Powell's Book" on the engraved sheet, although two other sheets bear the name "Joseph Vines". 

Includes sections on: 'Of Simple Interest for Days', 'Compound Interest', 'Of Rebate or Discount', 'Of Barter', 'Of Loss and Gain', 'Of Exchange', 'Of Conjoin'd Proportion', 'Of Alligation', 'Of Comparative Arithmetic', 'Of Geometrical Progression', 'Of Permutation'. Sections copied from 18th century publications teaching arithmetic in school, e.g. The Schoolmaster's Assistant by Thomas Dilworth (first published in 1743).

e.g. "A farmer mingled 19 Bushels of wheat, at 6s. per bushel, and 40 bushels of rye, at 4s. per bushel, and 12 bushels of barley, at 3s per bushel together. I demand what a bushel of this mixture is worth." (Alligation).

During the eighteenth century mathematics was coming to permeate more and more of the trades that a person might wish to train in. Sailors needed more mathematics if they wished to know how to navigate; merchants needed to perform ever more complex currency calculations on an increasing range of goods. The state was gathering more data and interpreting it in more complex ways. The Royal Military Academy employed two mathematical professors not just to teach mathematics to cadets but to do research, for instance on the mathematics of projectile motion. (https://plus.maths.org/content/learning-arithmetic-georgian-england)

It is our belief that majority of the copy book (arithmetic pages) was written by "W. Powell", and that "Joseph Vines" penned two sheets only ((likely later) spelling practice, which includes the dates in May 1807). Note that Vines spells the word "honor" in the American way, possibly indicating that this book ended up on the other side of the Atlantic from its likely origination.

Stock Code: 243308

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