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  • Mémoire explicatif des phénomènes de l’aiguille aimantée, pour faire suite à la Question de Longitude sur mer au moyen d’une sphère-pendule par Demonville. by DEMONVILLE, Antoine Louis Guénard. DEMONVILLE, Antoine Louis Guénard. ~ Mémoire explicatif des phénomènes de l’aiguille aimantée, pour faire suite à la Question de Longitude sur mer au moyen d’une sphère-pendule par Demonville. Paris: [Bacquenois et Appert] chez l’auteur, 1833.
    First separate edition, also issued simultaneously as a suite to the author’s Question de longitude sur mer (1833), but here issued alone with its own… (more)

    First separate edition, also issued simultaneously as a suite to the author’s Question de longitude sur mer (1833), but here issued alone with its own title-page and errata leaf forming a wrapper. The final 4 leaves are adverts for the author’s controversial mechanical planispheres, one of which is illustrated in the very large folding plate.

    Demonville had been a printer (and the son of a printer to the Académie française) but diversified as a maker of globes scientific instruments after losing his licence to print in Paris. In the year of publication, he acquired notoriety as an astronomical crank who denied the astronomy of Copernicus, Galileo, Newton, Halley and Herschel. His planispehere demonstrates his alternative system: the earth, the sun and the moon are the only astronomical bodies; the earth does not rotate (it merely nods a little over the course of a year); the moon is 250 leagues from the earth and the sun, just 1500; the stars are affixed to the crystalline sphere; and the planets have no corporeal existence. Demonville hawked his system (with both books and his instruments) around Paris and London, even obtaining an audience with William III, who asked the Royal Society for their opinion. With his longitude pamphlets he sought to obtain prizes from the Societies of Paris and London but ideas were roundly dismissed, and Demonville pilloried in the press. Both issues rare.

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  • Les Mondes imaginaires et les mondes réels. Voyage pittoresque dans le ciel... septième èdition. by FLAMMARION, Camille. FLAMMARION, Camille. ~ Les Mondes imaginaires et les mondes réels. Voyage pittoresque dans le ciel... septième èdition. Paris: Librairie académique Didier et Compagnie, Gauthier-Villars, 1868.
    First published in 1865 and hugely popular, this copy of the seventh edition is from the library of Napoleon III. (more)

    First published in 1865 and hugely popular, this copy of the seventh edition is from the library of Napoleon III.

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  • Traicté des globes, et de leur usage. Traduict du Latin de Robert Hues, et augmenté de plusieurs nottes & operations du compas de proportion, par D. Henrion, mathematicien. by HUES, Robert. D[enis] HENRION, translator. HUES, Robert. D[enis] HENRION, translator. ~ Traicté des globes, et de leur usage. Traduict du Latin de Robert Hues, et augmenté de plusieurs nottes & operations du compas de proportion, par D. Henrion, mathematicien. Paris: Abraham Pacard, 1618.
    First edition in French of Tractatus de globis (1594), an important navigational work originally dedicated to Sir Walter Raleigh. Hues had studied at Oxford where… (more)

    First edition in French of Tractatus de globis (1594), an important navigational work originally dedicated to Sir Walter Raleigh. Hues had studied at Oxford where he became acquainted with Richard Hakluyt and later, Walter Raleigh and Thomas Harriot, before taking part in a voyage to Newfoundland. In five parts, the book describes the practical uses of the globes designed by Molyneux and, especially, how mariners could find the sun’s position, latitude, course and distance, amplitudes and azimuths, and time and declination. The fifth part describes the use of rhumb lines in navigation.

    The translation is by Denis Henrion, the Paris mathematician remembered for his edition of the works of Viète and for the introduction of the calculating device known as the proportional compass to France. Henrion’s is a faithful translation with numerous interpolations of his own (indicated by italics). In these, Henrion adds several practical details to the methods of calculation but also takes the opportunity to advertise his Cosmographie, which was not to appear until two years later. At several points he affirms Hues’ text while stating ‘comme nous avons enseigné en nostre Cosmographie.’ The notes on the operation of the proportional compass promised by the title are confined to very sparse remarks on how a lengthy calculation, for example, could be achieved simply with the compass. They would appear to be an attempt to advertise another of Henrion’s works, Usage du compas de proportion (also 1618) and perhaps the instruments themselves. Copac lists no UK copies. Worldcat lists US copies at Folger, Harvard, Illinois, Minnesota and Brown. Copies of the same year are known with the imprint ‘Michel Daniel’ and identical pagination, primacy, if any is not established.

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