Amsterdam: Janssonius-Waesberge, 1665.
1st Edition. Hardcover. Large Folio. Very Good. Item #003384
Folio (402 x 234 mm). , 346, ; , 487,  pp., including allegorical additional title to each part (both dated 1664), engraved portrait of Kircher and dedicatee Pope Alexander VII, engraved device on title of part 1, 21 (11 double-page, 1 folding, 2 small-size) engraved maps and plates, 7 (4 folding, 3 double-page) letterpress tables, 61 engraved illustrations and maps in text, 3 intact volvelles on pp. 132, 154 and 156; numerous woodcut illustrations throughout, woodcut initials and tailpieces, text in double column. Plate facing p.186 of part I misbound in part II. Signatures: *4 (*2+[chi]1) **6 ***4 A-Xx4; (*)6 A-Qqq4. Engraved titles part of signature. Bound in contemporary Dutch vellum over bevelled wooden boards, spine with 6 raised bands and faint handlettering, boards with blind-ruling and blind-tooled central arabesque, original endpapers, brass clasps and catches, straps gone (vellum soiled and with minor repair at foot of spine). Repaired clean tears in Vesuvius plate (no loss), a few short clean tears elsewhere, small burn hole in D3 outside text area, page 141 of part II soiled, small worm track at upper blank gutter of final leaves, two oversized tables trimmed close just into frame at one edge (without loss of text), small dampstain to upper corner of one gathering, folding plate facing p.222 with short clean tear at gutter. Text and plates generally quite crisp and clean with just very little occasional spotting. Provenance: Dr. C. Depuydt (bookplate to first flyleaf). Collated and complete. A fine copy in original binding. ----
Norman 1218; Merrill 17; de Backer-S. IV, 1060 f.; Caillet 5738; Ferguson 1:467; Nissen ZBI 219; Sinkankas 3419; Honeyman 1823; Hoover 483; Ward-Carozzi 1257; Sabin 37967; Alden-L. 665/114. - RARE FIRST EDITION, FIRST ISSUE of both parts, with the engraved titles dated 1664. Kircher's encyclopedic compilation describes the physical characteristics of the subterranean or 'hidden' world, which, as such, "must always command a high place in the literature as the first effort to describe the earth from a physical standpoint" (Zittel). His speculations on the existence of a vast underground network of springs and reservoirs, as well his attribution of volcanic eruptions and hot springs to fiery, subterranean regions, stem from his observations of the eruptions of Stromboli, Aetna and Vesuvius and of the violent earthquakes that rocked Calabria between 1637 and 1638, all of which he describes in his preface. He also theorized that volcanoes functioned as 'safety valves' for the inner core of the earth. While some of his notions were fanciful (such as the existence of subterranean monsters), others embraced various branches of science, including physics, geography, geology and chemistry. Although largely critical of alchemy and alchemists (whom he called swindlers: 'homines ad omne fraudis genus fictos'), Kircher did support the transmutations of metals, particularly of iron into copper. His views on the influence of weathering, which he attributed to a chemical process and to cold, were reasonably sound, as was that of the geological action of water and wind, and his interpretation of fossils remained popular until the beginning of the 18th century. The illustrations range from the utterly realistic to the utterly fantastic, such as the crystals copied from from Imperato's Historia naturale and a collection of images on stone allegedly formed by nature - including a Madonna - derived from Aldrovandi's Musaeum metallicum (1648). In addition to minerals and fossils, Kircher also covers such topics as metallurgy and mining, mines in Spain, Hungary, Peru, and America, pyrotechnic arts, the analysis of mineral waters, poisons, hydraulics, meteorology, distillation, etc.
Delivery time up to 10 days. For calculation of the latest delivery date, follow the link: Delivery times
Lieferzeit max. 10 Tage. Zur Berechnung des spätesten Liefertermins siehe hier: Lieferzeiten