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Piano di Operazioni Idrauliche per ottenere la Massima Depressione del Lago di Sesto, o sia di Bientina.
- Finely engraved title & five folding engraved plates. 1 p.l. (engraved title), x, 347 pp. Large 4to, cont. mottled sheep (extremities a little worn & rubbed), spine gilt, contrasting leather lettering piece on spine. Lucca: F. Bonsignori, 1782. First edition of this beautifully produced book printed on thick paper; it is a plan for an ambitious project of civil engineering and land reclamation. Lake Sesto (also known as Lake Bientina) posed a problem for the nearby town of Lucca in Tuscany as it was a large reservoir of stagnant water which caused numerous epidemics of malaria. Ximenes’ solution was to drain the lake and reclaim the land by cutting a new channel, the "Nuovo Ozzeri," in addition to the existing Canale d’Ozzeri. The handsome engraved title-page shows two former fisherman carrying their boat away from a field now being ploughed. Ximenes has included on pages 175-205 the comments on his plan by Roger Joseph Boscovich ("Riflessioni sulla Relazioni del Sig. Abate Ximenes appartenente al Progetto di un Nuovo Ozzeri ") and an examination of it by Eustachio Zanotti ("Esame del Progetto del Novo Ozzeri") on pages 209-39. On pages 243-347 Ximenes provides his reply to both. Ximenes (1716-86), a Jesuit born in Sicily, became an ardent student of the sciences and made rapid progress in mathematics and geography. He was given the title of "mathematician to the Emperor," and held the chair of geography at the Academy of Florence. He wrote extensively on hydraulics, astronomy, and mechanics. One of the plates is a long extending cross-section of the Nuovo Ozzeri. Ximenes’ plan was not put into effect, however, and the area surrounding Lucca continued to be malaria-infected marshland until the mid-19th century. Fine copy. Small gilt stamp of John Phillips Bodenhausen at foot of upper cover. [Attributes: First Edition; Hard Cover]
      [Bookseller: Jonathan A. Hill, Bookseller Inc.]
Last Found On: 2014-10-10           Check availability:      AbeBooks    

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