Amsterdam: [Marc-Michel Rey], 1770.
1st Edition. Hardcover. 8vo - over 7¾ - 9¾" tall. Very Good. Item #002396
Systême de la Nature. Ou des Loix du Monde Physique & du Monde Moral. 'Londres' [i.e. Amsterdam]: [Marc-Michel Rey], 1770. 2 parts in two volumes. 8vo (200 x 124 mm). , 370; , 412 pp., including half-title and 4pp. errata bound after contents in first vol. Contemporary polished calf, boards ruled in gilt, plain spines richly so and with double red morocco labels, all edges gilt (extremities rubbed, corners worn, boards soiled, rubbed and stained, joint to upper board of vol. II split at foot), marbled endpapers. Internally only little browned in margins, ink signature to titles, leaves D4-5 vol. I soiled, faint dampstaining to a few leaves in vol. II, very minor occasional spotting. Provenance: bookplate with the arms of the Verthamon family to front pastedown of vol. I (removed in vol. II); Kachanska? (signature to title pages). A fine set in original binding. ----
PMM 215; Kress 6737; Tchemerzine VI, 243. FIRST EDITION, FIRST ISSUE (with comma after 'Londres' in imprint and the errata leaves). Published under the late Mirabaud's name to avoid censure. "In the Systeme, Holbach rejected the Cartesian mind-body dualism and attempted to explain all phenomena, physical and mental, in terms of matter in motion. He derived the moral and intellectual faculties from man's sensibility to impressions made by the external world, and saw human actions as entirely determined by pleasure and pain. He continued his direct attack on religion by attempting to show that it derived entirely from habit and custom. But the Systeme was not a negative or destructive book: Holbach rejected religion because he saw it as a wholly harmful influence, and he tried to supply a more desirable alternative" (PMM 215). 1st Printing.
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