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Summule in lib. Physicorum adsunt - Ockham (William of) - 1506. [1221465]
Lazzaro Soardo 17 August 1506 - woodcuts of a teacher with pupils (title page recto) and of the Virgin and Child presenting rosaries (title page verso), 10-line woodcut black-on-white historiated initial on A1r, 8-line and 5-line Lombard and white-on-black initials on 2-3 and A1r, initial spaces with guide letters elsewhere, woodcut device on final leaf verso, text in double columns, title-page dust-soiled and strengthened at inner margin, short tear in fore-margin repaired, ff. 32, small 4to, late 19th-century brown morocco, double blind fillets on sides with inner roll tooled border, double gilt rules forming compartments on spine, a few minor scratches, spine slightly worn at ends, good. Very rare second, but earliest obtainable, edition of William of Ockham's major treatise on physics, one of the principal statements of the nominalist philosophy of the science of motion and the concept of inertia. Summulae physicorum adumbrated a fundamental distinction for mediaeval mechanics, namely that between dynamic and kinematic motion, subsequently given mathematical precision by Bradwardine, Dumbleton, Heytesbury and others. Its influence on the later history of the philosophy of science was felt in the nominalist tendencies of Locke, Hume, etc. 'For Ockham, there is no need for real "mathematical" entities—numbers, points, lines, surfaces, solids (in the geometrical sense). Talk about such things can invariably be parsed away, via the theory of connotation or exposition, in favor of talk about substances and qualities. This Ockhamist move is illustrative of and influential on an important development in late medieval physics: the application of mathematics to non-mathematical things, culminating in Galileo's famous statement that the "book of nature" is written in the "language of mathematics" . Ockham's contributions were by no means the only factor in the increasing mathematization of science in the fourteenth century. But they were important ones' (SEP). The first edition was published at Bologna in 1494 (Goff O-22, two copies: Georgetown & Philadelphia College of Physicians); no copies located in auction records. This second edition is also rare, with only two copies auctioned in the last 40 years. A third edition was published at Rome in 1637. A curiosity of this copy is that bound at the end are the first 4 leaves (title - repeating the woodcut of the master and pupils - dedication, table) of Soardo's 1508 edition of Ockham's Summa totius logice. The 2 works are sometimes found together, e.g a copy in St. John's College, Oxford, and that in the Folger. At the top of the title-page (Summule) is an inscription recording a perusal of the work in 1573 (or perhaps 1523), and an ownership inscription dated 1626 with something possibly erased below it. (Adams O-42; Essling 1513; Parkinson, Breakthroughs, p. 19; DSB X: 171-5; M. Clagett, Science of Mechanics, p. 207; Stillwell, Science Awakening V.782 (1494 ed.))
      [Bookseller: Blackwell's Rare Books ABA ILAB BA]
Last Found On: 2016-10-07           Check availability:      AbeBooks    


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