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Epitome astronomiae copernicanae. Frankfurt: Johann Friedrich Weiss

  • GBR
  • 2016-10-20
About the object
8vo (180 x 117mm.), woodcut diagrams, with blank leaves ***4, Cc6 and Vvvv8, slip with printed catchword inserted at foot of ***3v (also noted by Cinti), folding letterpress table, contemporary carta rustica, UNCUT, manuscript note in Italian on front flyleaf (erased), collector's black morocco-backed box by the Chelsea Bindery, title-page repaired in gutter, small hole in Ccc7 affecting 2 letters, quire Mmm repaired along folds, a few quires at end with small tears around the sewing, resewn with new spine lining and vellum sewing supports
AN UNCUT COPY OF THE FIRST COMPLETE EDITION of Kepler's summations of astronomy in seven books, which were first published in three separate volumes from 1618 to 1621. In these he expounds his theory of the universe according to Copernican and Galilean principles, which clearly includes the motion of the earth; not surprisingly, the first published part was placed on the Index of Prohibited Books in 1619. "Taken together, they [the seven books] constitute a squat unprepossessing octavo volume whose physical appearance scarcely marks it as KEPLER'S LONGEST AND MOST INFLUENTIAL WORK" (DSB VII, p. 302).
It is possible to see, from this uncut copy, that one half of each sheet was printed with an ample fore-edge, and the other half with a narrow fore-edge, which is why trimmed copies generally have much narrower dimensions.

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