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Utriusque Cosmi Maioris scilicet et Minoris Metaphysica. Physica Atque Technica Historia In duo Volumina secundum Cosmi differentiam divisa. Tomus Primus: De Macrocosmi Historia in duos tractatus divisa. Tomus Primus [BOUND WITH:] Tractatus Secundus.
Oppenheim & Frankfurt:: Johann Theodore de Bry, Hieronymus Galler (part I) and Kaspar Rotel (part II), 1617-24.. [Printed 1617-1624]. Two parts bound in one. Folio. Collation: [-]¹, A2 [A1 signed ], B-2B4, 2C8; A-3G4, 3H2, 3I-5G4, 5H3 [of4] [lacks 5H4 blank]. Pagination: [2], 206 (misprinted as 106), [10]; 788, [10] pp. [781/2 and 779/80 out of position] Two engraved title-pages, approximately 268 text plates (64 large) by Matthias Merian. Five inserted (not part of collation) plates in second part at page 161, two (one folding) after page 408, and two (double-page) after page 428; plate on Bb4v (page 200) pasted-over with corrected plate; folding plate at page 161 in part II with cellophane tape repairs at folds; some margins folded to protect them from being trimmed short in binding (thus the text was preserved); minor marginal wormhole with a few paper repairs; marginal repair in 5H3, second leaf of index with natural tear, final printed leaf with two cellophane tape repairs at gutter, some leaves are browned as usual. Early twentieth century vellum backed marble-paper covered boards, maroon morocco gilt-stamped spine label, edges red, marbled endpapers. Old owner’s name on front free endpaper, stamps of Bibliothek des Goetheanum [Dornach, Switzerland – named after Johann Wolfgang von Goethe], on endpaper and inserted plates (on blank versos). Very good. First edition, second impression of part I; ‘second’ edition of part II. Though the first title-page is unchanged and has 1617 as the printing date, it has been widely accepted that the first volume was reissued with some corrections to accompany the stated ‘second edition’ of volume two. Although usually found with the second title-page in the revised version with the top architectural border removed, unlike this copy which has the border intact. ¶ “Fludd has been characterized as ‘a philosopher, physician, anatomist, physicist, chemist, mathematician and mechanician,’ and credited with ‘a rare gift of observation in the exact sciences.’ But he still thought it possible and advisable to combine with this science and medicine not only a cloak of religion but also much of the occult science that had come down from the past: magic and cabala, astrology and alchemy, physiognomy and chiromancy, geometry and weather signs. Natural, preternatural, supernatural, and things contrary to nature, were all closely related and even confused by him. Magic was science, and nature a mystery.” (Thorndike). In the second part he dealt extensively with math, music, geometry, perspective, painting, military art, machinery, sundials, cosmography, astrology and geomancy. THE MAGIC OF SCIENCE, THE SCIENCE OF MAGIC – HISTORY OF THE TWO WORLDS: MACROCOSM & MICROCOSM. “The first of Fludd’s philosophical works to appear was the account of the macrocosm and the microcosm, entitled Utriusque cosmi é historia. It consists in two massive folios which are copiously illustrated with remarkable mystical emblems representing relationships between man, the cosmos, and the godhead. It is very likely that Fludd himself was the draughtsman of these illustrations with their recurrent geometrical motifs of concentric circles, triangles, pyramids, hemispheres, blazing suns, and the interplay of areas of dark and light. The significance of the emblems is revealed in accompanying texts, which bring together quotations from the Bible and hermetic lore. In these volumes Fludd expresses both his adherence to a Judaeo-Christian interpretation of world history based on the text of the Bible and his hostility to the learning of the universities in the form of Aristotelian natural philosophy and Galenic medicine. Fludd’s originality lay in his revival of the fifteenth-century neoplatonism of Ficino and Pico and their sources in the corpus hermeticum, and his uniting of these with an alchemical account of the creation based on a literal reading of the book of Genesis. The major explanatory mechanism of the workings and order of the world is the parallel between macrocosm and microcosm. Man is revealed to be the ‘ape of nature’, imitating and completing her work through the exercise of geometry, music, memory, astrology, physiognomy, chiromancy, and the mechanical arts, including cosmography, painting, and the art of warfare; all of these are in some sense founded on number. Fludd’s metaphysics postulates a complex and all-embracing correspondence between the world of spirits and the physical world; this entailed opposition to Copernicanism. For Fludd the sun, source of heat, light, and spirit, goes round the earth and vivifies it, just as the Holy Spirit vivifies man.” (Oxford DNB). REFERENCES: J.B. Craven, The Life and Mystical Writings of Dr. Robert Fludd, p. 243-244; Shaaber 163; BL 17th German F549; Krivatsy, NLM 4144; Caillet 4042; Duveen 222; Neu 1453; Osler 2621-2622; Partington II, 325; Casanetense 478; Gardner, Astrologica 412; F. Leigh Gardner, Bibliotheca Rosicruciana, 217-218; Graesse, Magica, 113. Young 115; Smith and De Morgan 614; Thorndike, A History of Magic and Experimental Science, VIII, pp.443-444; Wellcome 2324; Mellon 83; Ferguson I, 283; Houzeau/Lancaster I, 2925, 2966; Neville I, 458. Cantamessa I, 1538. FULL TITLE: Utriusque Cosmi Maioris scilicet et Minoris Metaphysica. Physica Atque Technica Historia In duo Volumina secundum Cosmi differentiam divisa. Tomus Primus: De Macrocosmi Historia in duos tractatus divisa. Tomus Primus [BOUND WITH:] Tractatus Secundus, De Naturae Simia seu Technica macrocosmi historia, in partes undecim divisa. [PLEASE CONTACT DIRECT FOR FURTHER INFORMATION].
      [Bookseller: Jeff Weber Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2017-06-22           Check availability:      IOBABooks    

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