London: Benjamin Motte, 1729.
1st Edition. Hardcover. 4to - over 9¾ - 12" tall. Very Good. Item #003338
Exceptional set in its original bindings, virtually untouched internally and complete in every respect. 8vo (196 x 122 mm). Volume I with engraved frontispiece by A. Motte, , 320 pp. and with 25 folding engraved plates (numbered I to XXV, plate I of vol. II misbound here after p.16); volume II with engraved frontispiece by A. Motte, , 393, , viii, 71  pp. and with 19 folding engraved plates (numbered I to XIX, pl. I misbound in vol. I), 3 unnumbered additional folding engraved plates bound after first leaf of index, and 2 folding tables. In all, there are 2 frontispieces, 47 plates, 2 tables and 3 head-pieces by Motte, as called for. Both volumes are bound in uniform contemporary English calf and housed in a custom-made slipcase. All joints are expertly restored (no rebacking, no previously detached boards, only repair of cracked joints with sound cords), missing spine label to vol. I renewed, red-sprinkled edges. There is gilt ruling and floral decoration to spines and gilt ruling to boards. The spine ends are a bit scuffed and the spine, boards and extremities rather worn. Internally, both volumes are crisp with only little occasional spotting and dust-soiling to outer margins, the frontispiece and title of vol. II a bit soiled, a clean tear to blank lower margin of leaf X7 in vol. I, plate III in vol. I slightly soiled and spotted. The leaves between pp. 16 and 33 of second part in vol. II are bound in wrong order. Otherwise, both volumes are in near fine condition, with full margins, and in its first bindings. Provenance: Binder's ticket to front pastedown of each volume: Thackray Bookseller, 51 Shude Hill, Manchester; contemporary owner inscription to front free endpaper of vol. I, 'Roger Hesketh', and his initials to title page of the same. ----
Babson 20; Norman 1587; PMM 161 (1st. Lat. ed.); Wallis 23. - FIRST EDITION IN ENGLISH OF NEWTON'S "PRINCIPIA", widely regarded to be the greatest work in the history of science. Motte's translation is highly regarded, and subsequent scholars have made revisions and corrections to the later editions, rather than undertake a new translation themselves. The first edition of Newton's Principia was in Latin, published in 1687. Two further London editions followed, in 1713 and 1726, in addition to a 1714 Amsterdam edition, before the revolutionary work (which Einstein described as "perhaps the greatest intellectual stride it has ever been granted for any man to make") became available to a wider lay audience with this handsomely printed English translation by Motte. It contains John Machin's attempt to rectify Newton's lunar theory, The Laws of the Moon's Motion, according to Gravity, here added to the end of the second volume. Motte's translation of Newton's System of the World occupies page 200 on in the second volume. Because the book saw wide circulation and is of enduring interest, with commensurately heavy use, copies as fresh as this in contemporary bindings are of genuine rarity. - Visit our website to see more images!
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