MEIL, Johann Wilhelm.

Spectaculum Naturae & Artium,

in vier Sprachen, Deutsch, Lateinisch, Franzosisch und Italianisch [title repeated in French].

Berlin: George Ludewig Winter, 1761 & 1765 Stock Code: 129021
£10,000.00

Rare polyglot encyclopaedia in contemporary paper boards

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Notes

First edition of both volumes of this rare polyglot pictorial encyclopaedia of trades, technology, crafts, and nature, with the text in four columns in German, Latin, French and Italian. The attractive illustrations cover beekeeping, printing, engraving, bricklaying and other trades, as well as scientific and military equipment. The work was aimed at children, and its various languages no doubt intended it for a continent-wide market. The work is scarce, with WorldCat listing only eight institutions with both volumes.

Provenance: The Lawes Agricultural Library, with their neat stamp and shelfmarks to pastedown. The library was assembled in the early 20th century by Sir John Russell, director of the Rothamsted agricultural research institution in Hertfordshire, and ranked as one of the finest English collections of agricultural material.

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Description

2 volumes bound in 1, quarto (214 x 175 mm). Contemporary red paper boards, spine lettered in gilt, gilt ruled border to covers, red speckled edges. Housed in a brown cloth flat-back box by the Chelsea Bindery.

Illustrations

With 50 engraved plates by Meil, woodcut borders to title pages and woodcut vignette tail-pieces.

Condition

Contemporary ownership signature to front free endpaper. Paper backing stripped to spine and around extremities, with some loss to gilt, light wear around extremities, 3 cm short closed tear to fourth leaf, some very light creasing to page corners, couple of instances of faint foxing. Still a very good copy in a highly fragile contemporary German paper-backed binding.

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