Edinburgh: William and Robert Chambers, 1842.
1st Edition. Hardcover. 8vo - over 7¾ - 9¾" tall. Very Good. Item #003300
8vo (248 x 155 mm). x, -126 pp., text printed in two columns, 7 lithographed plates at end. Bound in 20th-century brown library cloth, gilt-lettered spine (minor rubbing to extremities, shelf number added to spine). Translator's name added in ink below title, small chip to lower corner of title, lightly browned throughout, light marginal dust-soiling. Provenance: Anatomy Dept. Library, Cambridge University. ----
EXCEPTIONALLY RARE FIRST EDITION IN ENGLISH of "Sur l'homme et le développement de ses facultés", Quetelet's foundation work of social statistics. This edition, translated by Robert Knox, contains a new preface by the author to defend his work from objections brought against it subsequent to the publication of the Paris edition of 1835. Quetelet was among the first to apply statistics to social science. His goal was to understand the statistical laws underlying such phenomena as crime rates, marriage rates or suicide rates. He wanted to explain the values of these variables by other social factors. "With Quetelet's work . . . a new era in statistics began. It presented a new technique of statistics or, rather, the first technique at all. The material was thoughtfully elaborated, arranged according to certain preestablished principles, and made comparable . . . Quetelet's average man became a slogan in ninetheenth-century discussions on social science . . . Quetelet's impact on nineteenth century thinking can in a certain sense be compared with Descartes's in the seventeenth century" (DSB XI, p.237). This English edition is of great rarity. Only one other copy is recorded as having sold in the past 30+ years (Sothebys, 1992). - Visit our website to see more images!
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