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Jamblichus Chalcidensis ex Coele-Syria, In Nicomachi Geraseni Arithmeticam introductionem, et De Fato. Nunc primum editus, in Latinum sermonem conversus, notis perpetuis illustratus a Samuele Tennulio, accedit Joachimi Camerarii Explicatio in duos libros Nicomachi, cum indice rerum & verborum locupletissimo.
Arnhem (Arnhemiae), Prostant apud Joh. Fridericum Hagium; Deventer (Daventriae), typis descripsit Wilhelmus Wier, 1667 - 1668. 4to. 3 parts in 1: (IV, frontispiece & title),(IX),181,(3 blank),239,(1) p., mathematical woodcut illustrations. Vellum 20 cm (Ref: STCN p.p. 053564642; Hoffmann 2,388; Ebert 10715; Brunet 3,494; Graesse 3,446/447) (Details: Greek text with Latin translation. Engraved frontispiece designed by J. van Steegeren, depicting a company of 6 Greek mathematicians, Aristoxenus, Ptolemaeus, Euclides, Nicomachus, Iamblichus and in their midst Pythagoras. Title printed in red and black. Occasional mathematical woodcut illustrations. Each of the 3 parts has a different title; the 2nd and 3rd part show the imprint: 'Daventriae, typis Wilhelmi Wier, 1667') (Condition: Vellum soiled. Endpapers inscribed; 2 bookplates on the front pastedown. Paper partly severely browned) (Note: This is the 'editio princeps' of a commentary, or paraphrase which the Greek neoplatonic philosopher Iamblichus, ca. 240 - 325 AD, wrote of Nicomachus of Gerasa's (surviving) 'Arithmêtikê eisagôgê', or 'Institutio Arithmetica'. Nichomachus was a neoplatonic philosopher who probably lived ca. 100 AD. The 'institutio' which Nicomachus wrote, is an introduction to the arithmetic knowledge necessary for the understanding of the work of Plato and treatises of the Neopythagoreans. It consists more or less of a compilation of the general number theory of the Pythagoreans. Nichomachus discusses the one/many, even/uneven, several kinds of natural numbers and prime numbers. The Latin translation which Boethius produced in late antiquity of Nicomachus' 'Institutio' has profoundly influenced medieval mathematics. In the 9th century it was translated into Syrian and Arabic. The commentary/paraphrase 'On the introduction of the Arithmetic' of Nicomachus Gerasenus which Iamblichus wrote 2 centuries later, was originally a part of a greater work on Pythagorism, consisting of 10 books, of which the greater part was lost. Neoplatonists and Pythagoreans valued mathematics highly. It was possible, they thought, to acquire knowledge of the universe and ultimately one self through mathematics. So, the most appropriate knowlegde to human nature was mathematics.It was understood as the study of the structure of reality. § According to Hoffmann the 'De Fato' is the 7th and 8th chapter of Sectio VIII of Iamblichus work 'De Mysteriis Aegyptiorum'. The complete 'De Mysteriis' (On the Mysteries) was first published in Oxford in 1678 by Thomas Gale. So this fragment of 'De Fato' is in fact the 'editio princeps' of a small part (2 chapters) of the 'De Mysteriis'. Iamblichus argued in his 'On the Mysteries' that the gods help man on his way, and that they respond to prayer and offer supernatural guidance. § This 'editio princeps' was produced by the Dutch scholar Samuel Tennulius, or Samuel Ten Nuyl, who was from 1667 professor of History and Eloquence of the Academy at Nijmegen. He fled for the French, who were plundering the Eastern part of the Netherlands in 1672, and ended up in Arnhem, an unlikely place for the printing of a the work of a classical author, let alone an 'editio princeps'. He was born in Deventer and was since 1643 the father-in-law of J.F. Gronovius, who in the beginning of his career taught on the Athenaeum at Deventer before his professorship at Leyden. Tennulius is said to have been an excellent linguist and mathematician. Besides this Iamblichus edition he published a fragment of 'De Urbibus' of Stephanus Byzantinus (Amst., 1669), 'Agathemeris Compendiariae Expositionis Geographiae libri II' (Amst., 1671), and an edition of Frontinus (Leiden/Amst., 1675). (Van der Aa 18, p. 63/64 & 'Inventarisatie Egodocumenten tot 1814 deel 1' on the site of 'Onderzoeksinstituut Egodocument en Geschiedenis') Tennulius stayed in Paris from 1659-1660 (why, we donot know), where he closely befriended the famous French classical scholar Henri de Valois, or Henricus Valesius, 1603-1676. In the preface Tennulius tells us of his daily visits to the Frenchman, how deeply he grew attached to him, (ut mittam reliqua amoris vestigia (eius)' p. II), and that he learned a lot of him (ab ore viri pependerim; & vidisse erat erudiri. (p.I)). Valesius not only instructed him, but introduced him also to other Parisian men of letters. Valesius obviously had a high opion of the capacities of his Dutch friend, for he even assigned him to lend a manuscript of Iamblichus from the 'Bibliotheca Memmiana', to make a transcript and to publish it. Tennulius did more than produce an edition of this difficult text of Iamblichus on Nicomachus' 'introductio', he also provided a Latin translation, and extensive commentary. The book consists of 3 parts, the first is the Greek text with a facing Latin translation, at the end of which Tennulius filled 5 pages with a short fragment concerning a treatise of Iamblichus called 'De Fato, which he had found in the Royal Library at Paris. The second part (56 pages) contains the commentary on Nicomachus' 'introductio', which was published by the German genius Joachim Camerarius in Augsburg in 1554. His commentary was the best that was written during the Renaissance. So it seems a wise decision of Tennelius to incorporate this in his edition) (Provenance: The front flyleaves and endpapers in the rear have been inscribed in Italian. On the front endpapers, which has a pair of flyleaves, we find the name of this inscriber: 'ex Bibliotheca Joh. Bapt Riarii Bononiensis Patricii'. This book once belonged to a member of the Bolognese branch of the Italian noble dynasty Riario. It had members who were dukes, cardinals and marquises. We donot know which Giovanni Battista Riario inscribed the endpapers. The handwriting, legible, but often difficult, seems contemporary. The inscription seems the concept of a treatise, or is a summary, entitled: 'Della Pittura perfetta Ideale, o bello sublime'. On the flyleaf at the end is what seems to be the layout of a title page for a publication of Riario, entitled: 'Prodromi alla perfetta cognitione dalla strutura'. Riario is designated there as 'G.B. Riario Lombardo Patricio Bolognese. § 2 bookplates have been pasted on the front pastedown. In the centre of the first one an engraved bookplate: 'Ex bibliotheca Michaelis Chasles, Acad. Scientiar. Socii'. Michel Chasles, 1793-1880, was a French philosopher and mathematician, appointed in 1841 professor of the 'École Polytechnique'. (See Wikipedia s.v. Michel Chasles, with his portrait); at the verso of the second front flyleaf: 'Venant de la vente Chasles du mardi 19 Juillet 1881, 3 fr. 20'; then the signature of 'P. Laffitte'. The buyer is the French philosopher Pierre Laffite, 1823-1903. His pupil Émile Littré tells that he gave 'des cours hebdomadaires d'histoire, de morale, de mathématique' in his own appartment. He was a brilliant teacher, who entertained his students even in café Voltaire. He has a statue somewhere in France, and rests at Père-Lachaise. § The other bookplate belongs to the Dutch physican and famous bookcollector Bob Luza, who died in 1980, and whose library was auctioned in 1981 by Van Gendt) (Collation: pi2, 3*4, chi1, A-Z4, a-z4, 2a4 (leaf 2a4 blank and not numbered), 2b-2g4, (2h1) (2h1 not numbered)) (Photographs on request)
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Last Found On: 2017-06-22           Check availability:      IOBABooks    


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