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Instauratio magna [Novum organum]. From the library: BACON, Francis

BACON, Francis

Published by John Bill, London (1620)

Used Hardcover First Edition

Quantity Available: 1

From: Milestones of Science Books (Ritterhude, Germany)

Seller Rating: 5-star rating

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Price: US$ 36,608.61
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About this Item: John Bill, London, 1620. Hardcover. Condition: Very Good. 1st Edition. Folio (283 x 175 mm). [12] 1-172, 181-360, 1-36 [2] pp., including engraved title by Simon van der Pass, woodcut headpieces and historiated initials. Signatures: [pi]2 ¶4 (A-C)6 (D-2S)4 2T6, (a-d)4 e4(-e3). With the initial blank, colophon and errata on e4r, e3 cancelled as usual. "Parasceue, ad historiam naturalem, et experimentalem" with divisional title, separate pagination and register. Bound in early 19th-century speckled calf with gilt spine and black letting piece gilt (rebacked preserving original spine), marbled endpapers. Internally crisp and unmarked, which only very minor spotting in places. Provenance: Lady Jane Davy* (armorial bookplate to front pastedown); Edward Hilton Young, Lord Kennet of the Dene (armorial bookplate to front pastedown); B. Quaritch (collation note), Sotheby's sale June 4th 1935, lot 430. A fine copy with important provenance. ---- Dibner 80; Horblit 8b; PMM 119; Norman 98; Sparrow 17; Gibson 103b; DSB I, pp.373-5; Pforzheimer, App. 1. FIRST EDITION, second issue of Bacon's manifesto for a new philosophy of scientific method, relying on laws deduced from observation and investigation. Bacon originally conceived his revolutionary work in six parts, of which only the first and second parts, the De augmentiis scientiarum (1623, a greatly expanded version of the Advancement of learning) and the Novum organum were completed. More than a mere portion of the Instauratio, however the Novum organum, as its title implies, "contains the central ideas of Bacon's system, of which the whole of the Instauratio is only the development" (Pforzheimer, p. XXI). Bacon's aim was to lay an entirely new foundation for science, "neither leaping to unproved general principles in the manner of the ancient philosophers nor heaping up unrelated facts in the manner of the 'empirics'" (DSB I, p.374). He conceived a new method of acquiring knowledge of the world through observation, experiment and inductive reasoning, which he envisioned as a tool for the "total reconstruction of sciences, arts and all human knowledge. to extend the power and dominion of the human race. over the universe. Bacon made no contributions to science itself, but his insistence on making science experimental and factual, rather than speculative and philosophical, had powerful consequences. As a philosopher Bacon's influence on Locke and through him on subsequent English schools of psychology and ethics was profound. Leibniz, Huygens and particularly Robert Boyle were deeply indebted to him, as were the Encyclopedistes and Voltaire." (PMM). His vision inspired the creation of the Royal Society and the other early scientific academies. The celebrated engraved title shows a ship sailing through the pillars of Hercules with the motto 'Multi pertransibunt et augebitur scientia' (Many will pass through and knowledge will be multiplied). The second issue as here has the e3 cancelled, and previously blank e4 printed with errata and colophon omitting the name of Bonham Norton. Only a very few copies of the first issue are known. *Lady Jane Davy (1780-1855) was the wife of Sir Humphry Davy. Already once a widow at the age of 32, she married him in 1812 just two days after he was knighted following the proclamation of the Regency. Sir Davy, "now married to a wealthy woman, was able to resign all his positions at the Royal Institution, Royal Society and Board of Agriculture. In some ways their relationship sounds like an inverted plot of a Jane Austen novel and this may explain why Jane Davy did not like Pride and Prejudice published at the start of 1813. [Sir] Davy told a friend that after his marriage, 'I shall be able to devote my whole time to the pursuit of discovery'. This proved to be very far from the case, although he did invent the miners' safety lamp at the Royal Institution in 1815. Visit our website for additional information and images. Seller Inventory # 002277

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