Paris: Michel Lesclencher for J. Petit and R. Chaudière, 1515.
1st Edition. Hardcover. Folio - over 12 - 15" tall. Very Good. Item #002972
Folio (256 x 188 mm).  2-91  leaves, roman foliation. Signatures: a8 b-p6. Black letter type, text in double column, large woodcut of Petit's device on title, full-page illustration of an armillary sphere by Oronce Finé on verso, woodcut decorative initials, several woodcut astronomical diagrams in text, colophon on final leaf recto. Rebound in modern half calf over marbled boards, spine lettered and ruled in gilt, all edges gilt, new endpapers. Internally quite clean and bright with only very minor brown spotting, several small closed wormholes throughout, mostly marginal but one in middle of leaves sometimes touching text, including the full-page illustration on verso of title, the small loss skilfully supplied in pen manuscript, worming stronger in upper margin of gatherings e-i, larger repair in corner of e5 (not affecting text), a few clean closed tears including a longer one across leaf d6 (without loss). Provenance: Sotheby's Sale Nov. 2, 1981, lot 130. A fine, expertly restored copy, collated complete. ----
Houzeau-Lancaster 2252; Mortimer/Harvard French, 432; DSB XV, Suppl. 1, p.475-6. - FIRST PARIS PRINTING as an independent work, with a commentary by Francesco Capuano and Silvestro Mazzolini da Priero. Of exceptional rarity, only two copies have appeared at auction in the past 40 years (our copy and an incomplete copy lacking the title-page). The work contains the earliest known woodcut by Oronce Finé, an illustration of the armillary sphere with his monogram and crowned dolphin in the lower border. "Theoricae novae Planetarum is an elementary but thorough textbook of planetary theory written by Peurbach to replace the old, and exceedingly careless, so-called Theorica planetarum Gerardi, a standard text written probably in the second half of the thirteenth century. The original version of the Theoricae novae, completed in 1454 ... contained sections on the sun, moon, superior planets, Venus, Mercury, characteristic phenomena and eclipses, theory of latitude, and the motion of the eighth sphere according to the Alphonsine Tables. Peurbach later enlarged the work ... by adding a section on Thabit ibn Qurra's theory of trepidation. Regiomontanus brought out the first printed edition (Nuremberg, ca, 1474). Zinner reports no fewer than fifty-six editions through the middle of the seventeenth century ... The diagrams are of considerable importance. Since parts of Peurbach's text would be unintelligible without them ... The Theoricae novae contains very careful and detailed descriptions of solid sphere representations of Ptolemaic planetary models that Peurbach based either upon Ibn al-Haytham's description of identical models in his On the Configuration of the world (translated into Latin in the late thirteenth century) or upon some later intermediary work. Peurbach's book was of great importance because his models remained the canonical physical description of the structure of the heavens until Tycho disproved the existence of solid spheres. Even Copernicus was to a large extent still under their influence, and the original motivation for his planetary theory was apparently to correct a number of physical impossibilities in Peurbach's models relating to nonuniform rotation of solid spheres." (DSB XV, p.475). - Visit our website for additional images and information.
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