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2019-11-06 08:45:09
HARRISON, John, [and Nevil MASKELYNE.]
The Principles of Mr. Harrison's Time-Keeper, with plates of the same. Published by Order of the Commissioners of Longitude.
London: W. Richardson and S. Clarke for John Nourse and Mess. Mount and Page, 1767. First edition. First edition, one of the very few copies with the plates printed on India paper, of the "description of the famous solution to the centuries-old world-wide problem of finding the longitude" (Grolier/Horblit). "Harrison's chronometer not only supplied navigators with a perfect instrument for observing the true geographical position at any moment during their voyage, but also laid the foundation for the compilation of exact charts of the deep seas and the coastal waters of the world ... There has possibly been no advance of comparable importance in aids to navigation until the introduction of radar" (PMM 208). In 1714 the Board of Longitude offered a reward of £20,000, a colossal sum at the time, to anyone who could find a reliable and accurate method for determining longitude at sea. In 1730 the clockmaker John Harrison (1693-1776) completed a manuscript describing some of his chronometrical inventions, including a chronometer "accurate enough to measure time at a steady rate over long periods, thus permitting the measurement of longitude by comparison of local solar time with an established standard time" (Norman). On the strength of his descriptions, Harrison obtained a loan from George Graham, a leading maker of clocks and watches, for the construction of his timekeeper. After numerous attempts, most of which either Harrison himself or his son William tested on ocean voyages, Harrison succeeded in constructing a chronometer 'H4' that was both accurate and convenient in size … [Click Below for Full Description]
Bookseller: SOPHIA RARE BOOKS [Denmark]

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