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Erz Stuffen und Berg Arten mit Farben genau abgebildet. herausgegeben durch Johann Michael Seligmann / Fossilium metalla et res metallicas concernentium glebae suis coloribus expressae.
Johann Michael Seligmann, Nuremberg 1753 - 4to (254x201 mm). 34 hand-coloured engraved plates (only, of 46) many heightened with gold and silver, 44 pp. only (of 56) of explanatory text plus engraved title page in Latin and 44 pp. only (of 56) of German text plus additional engraved title-page. Modern calf-backed boards with morocco letting pieces to spine, new endpapers, contemporary marbled edges. Internally with only very minor toning and spotting, pp.37-44 of German text misbound among Latin text. A crisp copy with the plates finely colored, very rare in any condition. ---- Hoover 728; DSB XII, 185-86; Honeyman 2796; Freilich Cat. 480. - Rare first edition of a work intended as a guide for miners and prospectors, providing detailed descriptions of the physical properties, localities, and modes of occurrence of various minerals ores, with beautifully coloured illustrations. Schmidel¿s work is hardly ever found complete, perhaps because of its publication in 28 parts from 1753 to 1765. Three of the four copies in the BL are imperfect, as were the Hoover, Freilich and Honeyman copies. Hoover calls for 46 plates. None of three copies sold at auction since 1980 contained more that 26; the Freilich copy had 21. This copy contains 34 plates an thus constitutes the most complete copy which has come up on the market for many decades. The plates included here are of the highest quality, several being beautifully heightened in silver and gold. "Schmiedel's interests as a naturalist focused on mineralogy, ore mineralogy in particular, and in 1753 he began issuing parts of a book designed to help miners and prospectors recognize the different kinds of metalliferous ore minerals. Erz Stuffen und Berg Arten ("Ore Specimens and Mineral Species of the Mines") consisted of descriptive text written by Schmiedel, complemented by an eventual total of 46 hand-colored copper-plate engravings of mineral specimens. The engravings were nearly all done by the Nuremberg engraver Johann Michael Seligmann (1720-1762). Seligmann had received his training in art at the Nürnberg Malerakademie, and in his short lifetime created illustrations for many books on science and natural history. Several artists produced the original paintings from which Seligmann executing his engravings; these included J. F. Kiefhaber, N. Gabler, J. C. Keller, J. C. Dietzsch and Christian Leinbarger, with engraving assistance from Johann Sebastian Leitner and Johann Christoph von Mayr. The last plates were issued sometime after 1771" (C. Schuh, 2005. Mineralogy & Crystallography: An Annotated Bibliography of Books Published 1469 through 1919). "The objective of this volume was to accurately portray minerals of economic importance in their "exact" colors, so that miners and prospectors could use it as a handbook and a guide to locate valuable ores. The noted engraver Johann Michael Seligmann [see note below] was responsible for the majority of the fine copper plates which show various specimens of copper, lead, zinc, silver and gold ores. The text, written in both Latin and German, meticulously describes the physical properties and modes of occurrence of the figured specimens, thus anticipating the importance of external characteristics in mineralogy. The specimens shown on the plates are unfortunately not fine crystallized specimens, but typical examples of valuable ores; therefore, one will be disappointed if too much is expected of the illustrations as mineral specimen depictions. They are, however, well executed pictures of ores samples.The Berlinischer Sammlungen review notice of Fossilium Metalla et res Metallicas indicates that sections containing 3 plates were to be issued every 2 months. Probably due to an insufficient number of subscribers however, the flow of new descriptions and plates became erratic, and with only twenty-eight plates distributed, eventually halted in 1765, although by this time, Schmidel's book was highly admired and much used as a practical tool. [Attributes: First Edition; Hard Cover]
      [Bookseller: Milestones of Science Books]
Last Found On: 2014-10-02           Check availability:      AbeBooks    


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