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De Lucernis Antiquorum Reconditis Libb. Sex: . . .

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De Lucernis Antiquorum Reconditis Libb. Sex: . . .


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  • Fine
  • Hardcover
  • first
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About This Item

Hardcover. Fine. Illustrated with over 100 copperplate engravings, including a folding plate and 2 double-page plates, all by Giovanni Giorgi; numerous engravings in text; woodcut printers mark on colophon page; with the phallic illustrations completely intact. (These, as noted by Graesse, are often defaced or removed.). Folio. 17th-century full calf, spine with 6 raised bands, richly tooled in compartments, title in gilt in second compartment. All edges speckled. Printed in Udine, Italy by Niccolo Schiratti for Francesco Bolzetti, 1653 (colophon dated 1652). Second Edition. First Enlarged Folio Edition, second issue, with new title page. This illustrated treatise on the sepulchral lamps of the ancients (mostly Greek and Roman) was first printed in Venice in 1621 in a smaller 4to format with fewer illustrations. (Brunet III, 1069; Cicognara 1678; Graesse IV, p.202.) Fortunio Liceti, often Latinized as Licetus, an Italian doctor, philosopher, and scientist, was professor at the universities of Padua and Bologna. He was a friend and colleague of Galileo when they both worked at the University of Padua. Galileo is cited by Liceti in col. 405 of this work in the chapter on water condensation. Licetis comprehensive discussion of ancient lamps addresses all aspects of the subject: from the physics and chemistry of their fire, to their historical and antiquarian interest. The particular emphasis is on the mystery of the so-called perpetual (or ever-burning) lamps. This work . . . is written expressly to prove the truth of the traditions concerning sepulchral lamps. The author accumulates a great number of witnesses, ancient and modern, quoting legends of Merlin, Porta, Scardeonius, and many others. . . . In his first book Licetus mentions thirty instances of perpetual lamps, including those connected with the mysteries of the Delphic Oracle, the ceremonies of Jupiter Ammon, and of the Vestal Virgins. The lamp of Demosthenes, which burned in the Temple of Minerva at Athens, also furnished him with a proof of the possibility of an inextinguishable fire. . . . (Henry Carrington Bolton, Legends of Sepulchral and Perpetual Lamps, p.10) With an 18th-century ownership signature on title page of count Ferdinand [Wilhelm Adolf Franz] von Plettenberg, a member of the Westphalian noble von Plettenberg family. Ferdinand von Plettenberg was the founder of the Plettenberg-Wittem branch of the family, in whose possession (at the Nordkirchen Castle) the book apparently remained for centuries. With the armorial Nordkirchen bookplate (dating to mid-19th century) on front pastedown. Binding rubbed with a few minor scuffs and light wear to extremities. Interior exceptionally clean, with only very light marginal soiling to a few leaves, and an occasional light see-through effect or offsetting from the engravings; a few pages with print somewhat faint due to either fading or poor inking. A bright and solid, wide-margined example.


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George Robert Minkoff, Inc. US (US)
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De Lucernis Antiquorum Reconditis Libb. Sex: . . .
Book Condition
Used - Fine
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George Robert Minkoff, Inc.

30 day return guarantee, with full refund including original shipping costs for up to 30 days after delivery if an item arrives misdescribed or damaged.Massachusetts residents must add 6.25 percent sales tax to remittances.

George Robert Minkoff, Inc.,
26 Rowe Rd., Great Barrington, MA 01230.
Tel: 413-528-4575.
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About the Seller

George Robert Minkoff, Inc.

Seller rating:
This seller has earned a 5 of 5 Stars rating from Biblio customers.
Biblio member since 2018
Great Barrington, Massachusetts

About George Robert Minkoff, Inc.

Early Printing, Literature and Illustrated Books.. By appointment only.


Some terminology that may be used in this description includes:

Calf or calf hide is a common form of leather binding. Calf binding is naturally a light brown but there are ways to treat the...
The collective of the top, fore and bottom edges of the text block of the book, being that part of the edges of the pages of a...
Very generally, "leaves" refers to the pages of a book, as in the common phrase, "loose-leaf pages." A leaf is a single sheet...
Full page illustration or photograph. Plates are printed separately from the text of the book, and bound in at production. I.e.,...
The decorative application of gold or gold coloring to a portion of a book on the spine, edges of the text block, or an inlay in...
Title Page
A page at the front of a book which may contain the title of the book, any subtitles, the authors, contributors, editors, the...
The outer portion of a book which covers the actual binding. The spine usually faces outward when a book is placed on a shelf....
The colophon contains information about a book's publisher, the typesetting, printer, and possibly even includes a printer's...
Highly sought after by some collectors, a book plate is an inscribed or decorative device that identifies the owner, or former...
A book with significant wear and faults. A poor condition book is still a reading copy with the full text still readable. Any...
A new book is a book previously not circulated to a buyer. Although a new book is typically free of any faults or defects, "new"...
A book in fine condition exhibits no flaws. A fine condition book closely approaches As New condition, but may lack the...
Raised Band(s)
Raised bands refer to the ridges that protrude slightly from the spine on leather bound books. The bands are created in the...
A folio usually indicates a large book size of 15" in height or larger when used in the context of a book description. Further,...

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