Paris: Charles-Antoine Jombert, 1749.
1st Edition. Hardcover. 4to - over 9¾ - 12" tall. Near Fine. Item #002900
4to (254 x 188 mm). , cx, , 394,  pp. Woodcut device on title, engraved head-pieces, woodcut initials and tail-pieces, 9 folding engraved plates including one of Peruvian profiles and another entitled Carte des Triangles de la Meridienne de Quito, errata leaf at end. With the cancel leaves A1, N4, Y4 and Ll3. Contemporary French mottled calf, spine richly gilt in compartments and with gilt-lettered red morocco llabel, marbled endpapers, red-dyed edges (joints of binding partly split, extremities rubbed, corners bumped and scuffed). Two small stains to title, occasional very light mainly marginal spotting, but generally a very clean and crisp copy. Provenance: Jean-Baptiste de Secondat baron de La Brède (1716-1796), eldest son of Charles de Seconat Montesquieu (signature to title-page); Giancarlo Beltrame Library. A near fine copy with interesting provenance. ----
Norman 285; Sabin 6876; DSB II, p.343. FIRST EDITION of the most important work to issue from the Peruvian expedition of 1735-1744, undertaken by the French Academie Royale des Sciences with the goal of measuring an arc of the meridian near the equator, resulting in the determination of the shape of the earth as an oblate spheroid. Bouguer quarrelled with his fellow scientists on the expedition, La Condamine and Godin, and thus published his own report separately. "Bouguer's work on the expedition. . . was of high quality. Apart from the main geodetic program, he did an astonishing amount of other scientific work, measuring the dilatation of various solids by making use of the large range of temperatures found in the Cordillera, investigating the phenomena of atmospheric refraction and the measurement of heights with the barometer, devising a new type of ship's log, and undertaking a number of other researches, despite the very difficult physical conditions under which the geodetic measurements had to be carried out" (DSB). - Visit our website for additional images and information.
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