Studii manuscritti di fisica meccanica geometria storia naturale


n.p. [Italy] n.p.. n.d. [mid-18th century].

394 leaves (788 pages) of closely written text in Latin on a variety of scientific, philosophical and theological subjects. 261x200mm. Bound in nineteenth century calf, boards decorated in blind, spine with four raised bands, decorated in gilt and blind and second compartment lettered in gilt.
This extensive manuscript book, which will repay further investigation, begins with a dissertation on air, fire, water and earth. It then continues, in the manner of a scholastic treatise using the framework of dissertatio and questio, to cover a huge range of subjects including natural history, geometry, mechanics, anatomy, physics and chemistry. Mentioned in the text are scientists and philosophers from the pre-Socratic Anaxagoras to the seventeenth century Jesuit theologian and scientist Niccolo Cabeo and so it seems that the book has a Jesuit origin. The links between science and religion are evident in this manuscript, the final section (forty two leaves) of which is devoted, in a different hand, to a Tractatus de Sacramentis. The book is extensively annotated in the margins and there are numerous corrections in the main body of the text. There are scientific drawings and diagrams in the margins. These include anatomical drawings (the brain, lungs and heart are here), drawings of leaves and of horses. All are beautifully executed. Apart from the short section at the end on the sacraments, the manuscript is written in one neat legible hand. In the text, we have found reference to the date 1738 so the book postdates that. The paper is watermarked from Bergamo. We have been unable to find any evidence of this having been published and it seems not to be a straight copy of an existing work - the extensive corrections and marginal notes allow us to discount this. Further detailed study awaits.

Recently viewed