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First and only edition of a rare 17th-century illustrated work on sundials

COLLINS, John.
Geometricall dyalling: or, dyalling performed by a line of chords onely, or by the plain scale.
London, printed by Thomas Johnson for Francis Cossinet, 1659. 4to (18.5 x 14 cm). With an engraved title-page, 19 engraved plates, 13 woodcuts in the text (including 1 full-page) and an engraving in the text. Modern black morocco with gold lettering on spine and a blind-tooled single fillet frame on each board. [1 blank], [2], [1 blank], [4], "82" [= 80] pp.
€ 6,500
First and only edition of a rare work on mathematics and especially sundials, illustrated with many geometric engravings on separate plates and woodcuts in the text, one of the earliest English works on the subject. It was meant for readers who had a certain basic understanding of mathematics, especially geometry and trigonometry, and who wanted to expand their knowledge on the mathematics needed to determine solar time and plot it on any plane. John Collins (1625-1683) was an English mathematician known for his works on mathematics, accounting and quadrants used in astronomy and navigation, and also for his extensive correspondence with leading scientists and mathematicians of his time, such as Isaac Newton. He was elected a fellow of the Royal Society in 1667. He had briefly touched on sundials a year earlier in his treatise on quadrants, but discusses them more extensively here. Thomas Fale and William Oughtred had written the first English works on sundials in the 1590s, but Joseph Moxon covered them only briefly in A tutor to astronomie and geography, in the same year as Collinss present work, and only later discussed the subject in more detail.
With the owner's inscription of Sir John Bowyer, first Baronet (of Knipersley) (1623-1666), on the recto of the engraved title-page: "John Bowyer his Booke Anno 1658": Bower was an English soldier and politician. Binding very slightly rubbed at the head and foot of the spine and the edges of the boards. Slight soiling throughout, head margin is cut somewhat short, without loss of text. Overall in good condition. A finely illustrated work on sundials, one of the earliest detailed accounts in English. ESTC R17003; Wing C5373.
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