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2015-01-09 11:00:51
ARFE Y VILLAFANE, Juan de
Quilatador de la Plata, Oro, y Piedras
Large woodcut device on title with arms, surmounted by papal & royal crowns and numerous woodcuts & woodcut initials in the text. Printed tables in the text. 4 p.l., 71 leaves, one leaf. Small 4to, fine 19th-cent. Jansenist binding of crushed red morocco by Thibaron-Echaubard (as usual, washed), dentelles gilt, a.e.g. Valladolid: A. & D. Fernandez de Cordova, 1572. First edition and very scarce. Arfe (1535-95), studied anatomy at Salamanca and became a celebrated artisan in precious metals. Trained as a goldsmith by his father, he was a leading figure of the Spanish artistic style known as "Plateresque," which was based on elaborate gold and silver designs. "Early, much respected treatise written for the edification of apprentices, goldsmiths, and jewelers as well as those interested in precious metals and cut gems generally. The first two books describe methods of assaying, purifying, and alloying silver and gold, with several quaint woodcuts of a balance, weights, receptacles, smelting furnace, etc. The ratios of precious to base metals are carefully tabulated and explained, also the marks that must be used to signify purity, the use of the touchstone and alloy points, and other information deemed essential to the successful and legal use of the precious metals... "For the gemologist, however, it is the last book that is of great importance because it contains some of the earliest reliable, detailed information on weighing, sizing, and valuing precious gems. Treated: diamond, ruby, emerald, spinel, balas (spinel), sapphire, emerald of Brazil (probably green tourmaline), t … [Click Below for Full Description]
Bookseller: Jonathan A. Hill, Bookseller, Inc.
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