Fortifications - Instruments
Censorship - Computation
Alchemy for Women - Poetry by Women
Mathematics - Combinatory Art - Indulgences
Art Manual - Mechanics - Astronomy - Sacrobosco
Shrine to Galileo Galilei


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Illustrated Compendium on Fortifications
By a Member of the Alberghetti Family
The Chief Suppliers of Guns to Venetian Arsenal

1. [Fortifications] ALBERGHETTI, Giusto Emilio. Compendio della fortificatione diviso in due parti. La prima dell’Architettura militare defensiva... La seconda dell’Architettura militare offensiva. Venice, Girolamo Albrizzi, 1695 (engraved title page dated 1694). Folio. Abundantly illustrated. Quarter-bound in 18th c. parchment and marbled boards. 


The second edition of a very rare work on military architecture by Giusto Emilio Alberghetti (1666-1755), a member of the famous Alberghetti family, the chief suppliers of guns and cannons to the Venetian Arsenal from 1487 to 1793. The work provides a copiously illustrated survey of defensive and offensive architecture from 3900 BCE to the 1670s. This second edition, of which only two institutional copies are known in the world with none in the U.S., appeared only one year after the first was published. No U.S. copies of the first edition.
Forerunner of Apianus’ Masterpiece Astronomicum Caesareum
Copiously Illustrated
Early Technical Work in the Vernacular

2. APIANUS, Petrus. Instrument Buch. [Ingolstadt], s.n., [1533]. Folio, with numerous woodcuts in text. Quarter bound 19th c. vellum and marbled paper over boards.


Rare first edition of this profusely illustrated technological classic on the use of a quadrant and related instruments by Petrus Apianus (1492-1552), “a pioneer in astronomical and geographical instrumentation, and one of the most successful popularizers of these subjects during the 16th century” (DSB). The Instrument Buch is among the earliest technical works in a vernacular language and one of the most influential. Two U.S. copies: at Yale and Smithsonian.

Biography of Jansenist Scholar Godefroy Hermant
With Manuscript Material on Louis XIV’s Royal Censorship

3. [Censorship] BAILLET, Adrien. La vie de Godefroy Hermant docteur de la Maison & Société de Sorbonne. Amsterdam, Chez Pierre Mortier, 1717. 12mo. In contemporary calf binding.


The first and only edition of the most detailed biography of the Jansenist theologian and doctor of the Sorbonne Godefroy (or Geoffroy) Hermant (1617-1690) by Adrien Baillet (1649-1706), a prolific historian and librarian. With interesting manuscript censorship documentation.

Briggs and Napier Come to the Continent
Sammelband of 2 Books on Computation Published in Gouda
In a Contemporary Blind-Stamped Binding

4. [Computation] BRIGGS, Henry / NAPIER, John / VLACQ, AdrianArithmetica Logarithmica sive Logarithmorum Chiliades Centrum, pro numeris naturali serie crescentobus ab Unitate ad 100000. Una cum Canone Triangulorum Seu Tabula Artificialium Sinuum, Tangentium & Secantium. Gouda, Petrus Rammasenius, 1628. Folio. Bound in contemporary German/Austrian blind-stamped pigskin over boards, Jesuit insignia stamped on covers.


Rare editions of two works important for bringing the new computational technique of Briggs and Napier to the Continent. The first work is considered the second edition of Briggs exposition of his own as well as Napier's treatment of the logarithm (first 1624).

“Secrets” of Alchemy, Cosmetics, and Medicine
Written by a Woman for Women

5. [Women / Alchemy] CORTESE, Isabella. I secreti della Signora Isabella Cortese, ne’ quali si contengono cose minerali, medecinali, profumi, belletti, artifitii, & alchimia; con altre belle curiosità aggiunte. Venice, Lucio Spineda, 1625. 8vo. In contemporary carta rustica. With woodcut illustrations of alchemical instruments.


A later edition of the Secrets of Signora Isabella Cortese, an important publication on practical alchemy, written by a female author and addressed to female readers. “Cortese’s recipes for beauty waters, soaps, and perfumes, along with others for calcinated mercury and potable gold, are deemed useful to ‘every noble lady’ and meant to reflect the range of uses that Renaissance women made of scientific experiment” (Ray, p. 11). With its audience comprising mostly bourgeois women, the book reflects “the increased accessibility of scientific culture to a broader public” at the time (Ray, p. 47).

Poetry of the “Intellectual Queen of a Literary Salon”
Published by the 17th C. Chief Promoter of Female Poets

6. [Women / Poetry] D’ARAGONA, Tullia. Rime della sig. Tullia d'Aragona. Naples, Antonio Bulifon, 1693. 12mo (15 x 8.5 cm). Bound in original vellum; edges speckled blue. 


The second posthumous edition of Tullia d’Aragona’s collection of poetry, published by Antoine Bulifon, who was “fundamentally important for the diffusion of women’s poetry” (Rabitti, p. 50). One of the most famous Italian sixteenth-century female poet-courtesans, Tullia d’Aragona (1501/1505-1556) has received considerable scholarly attention in the last decades, resulting in the publications of several English translations of her works. She has been called “the intellectual queen of a literary salon” (Masson, p. 88) due to her great success in entertaining the guests not only with her poetry, but also singing and playing the flute.

Huygens' Logarithmic Curve

7. [Mathematics] GRANDI, Guido. Geometrica demostratio theorematum Hugenianorum circa logisticam, seu logarithmicam lineam. Florence, Pietro Antonio Brigonci, 1701. Large 4to. Bound in contemporary cartonnage and patterned papers.


First edition of Grandi’s demonstration of Huygens’ logarithmic curve. Huygens had first enunciated theorems concerning the logarithmic or logistic curve (y = b ln(x/a) or x = aey/b) in a communication read before the Paris Academy in 1669; Grandi here demonstrates them in print for the first time.

First Edition of Athanasius Kircher’s Most Complex Book
With Unmounted Volvelles as Issued by the Publisher

8. [Combinatory Arts] KIRCHER, Athanasius. Ars Magna Sciendi in XII Libros Digesta, qua Nova et Universali Methodo per Artificiosum Combinationum contextum de omni re proposita plurimis et prope infinitis rationibus disputari, omniumque summaria quaedam cognitio comparari potest. Part I: Artis magnæ sciendi sive combinatoria… Part II: Artis magnæ seu combinatoriae sciendi… Amsterdam, J. Jansson à Waesberge, 1669. Folio. Abundantly illustrated. Bound in original calf over boards. 


First edition. "Nothing is more beautiful than to know all things," proclaims the motto on this work's title page. Aiming to categorize all qualities and relationships and apply symbolic formulae to every department of learning, this two-part volume is Kircher's most ambitious and complex work. Kircher develops here the Majorcan philosopher Raymond Lull's systems in ways which anticipate Leibniz.

Immaculate Instruction: A Brescian Book of Indulgences

9. [Church / Indulgences]. Libro dell’indulgenze, gratie, e stationi che sono in Roma, concesse alla Confraternita della Immaculata Concettione, Posta nella Chiesa di San Francesco di Brescia. Per esser unita con l’Archico[n]fraternità di san Lorenzo in Damaso di Roma. Brescia, Appresso Iacomo, e Policreto Turlini, 1580. 8vo. With two full-page woodcut illustrations. In carta rustica.


An exceedingly rare (with no copies recorded in OCLC) pocket-sized booklet, published in 1580 for the Franciscan-observant Confraternity of the Immaculate Conception of the Church of San Francesco in Brescia. It details the indulgences and privileges, granted under unification with the Archconfraternity of the Immaculate Conception of San Lorenzo in Damaso of Rome. A rare and fascinating example of the intersection of Catholic institutional reform and popular religiosity at the end of the sixteenth century, it is also a testament to increasing veneration of the cult of Virgin Mary. The book provides valuable insight into early modern lay piety, penitential culture, sacred geography, and the intense bureaucracy of the Tridentine church.

"An Incisive Pro-Woman (or Proto-Feminist) Text"
(Allen & Salvatore)
By Seventeenth-Century Advocate of Women Rights

10. [Women / Poetry] MARINELLA, Lucrezia. L’Enrico overo Bisantio Acquistato poema heroico. Venice, Ghirardo Imberti, 1635. 12mo. Bound in original speckled stiff board parchment.


First edition of a twenty-seven-canto epic poem on the Fourth Crusade (1202-1204) and Venice's conquest of Byzantium by Lucrezia Marinella (1571-1653), a prolific seventeenth-century Venetian writer, philosopher, and advocate of women's rights. The poem has been called an "incisive pro-woman (or proto-feminist) text," marked by female characters "whose behavior goes beyond accepted roles in her time" (Stampino, p. 65).

A Precursor to Piazzetta’s Drawing Manual?
With a Portrait of a Young Black Boy in European Attire

11. [Art / Drawing / Models] MATTIOLI, Ludovico. Bologna, Lelio della Volpe, 1728. Primi elementi della pittura raccolti da vari Auttori per uso di Principati del dissegno, et intagliati ad instanza di Leilo dalla Volpe in Bologna. Oblong 4to, 24 numbered full-page engraved plates. Bound in contemporary saddle-stitched carta rustica.


The first edition of a rare suite of an engraved title page and 23 splendidly engraved plates of drawing models for art students by the Bolognese artist Lodovico Mattioli (1662-1747). The models were adopted from works by Agostino Carracci, Jusepe de Ribera, Federico Barocci, and Carlo Maratti.
The 23 finely executed plates represent a variety of subjects required to master the art of drawing people, including anatomical details of the human body and different types of portraits. Particularly notable is a portrait of a young black boy in European attire (no. 14) -- an indication of a sustained interest and demand for images of black people in Italian eighteenth-century art. 

“The Most Important Book on Mechanics
Published in the Sixteenth Century” (Drake)
By Galileo’s Mentor
And Single Most Important Influencer on the Subject
The French Astronomer Darquier de Pellepoix’s Copy

12. [Mechanics] MONTE, Guido Ubaldo, Marchese del. Mechanicorum Liber. Pesaro, H. Concordia, 1577. Folio. With numerous illustrations and diagrams in the text. Bound in 18th century vellum over paste boards.

Rare first edition of the author’s first work, generally regarded as the most important treatise on mechanics since Archimedes and a critical influence on Galileo. The work is notable for its commitment to establishing mechanics on a rigorously mathematical basis, for its powerful argument that mechanics and statics are separate sciences and for its insistence that mechanics should not consider abstract and/or abstruse entities but the activity of machines. Stillman Drake particularly emphasizes the importance of the section on pulleys, where Monte reduces them (as he does most other simple machines) to a lever. 

“Earliest Italian Imprint to Depict and Discuss
the Copernican System” (Gingerich)

13. [Astronomy] / NAIBOD, Valentin. Astronomicarum Institutionum Libri III. Venice, P. Meietti, 1580. 8vo. With woodcut illustrations. Bound in contemporary limp vellum.

Rare first edition, second issue of this understudied work with a printed diagram of the geo-heliocentric system of Martianus Capella, as well as a diagram and exposition of the Copernican system. It is interesting to speculate that the young Galileo (b. 1564), whether as a student at Pisa or a lecturer at Padua, may have encountered the Copernican hypothesis in the present work.

Italian-Language Sacrobosco, Composed by Mauro
Dedicated to the Spanish Mathematician Juan de Ortega

14. [Cosmography] SACROBOSCO, Giovanni de & FIORENTINO, Mauro.  Sphera volgare novamente tradotta con molte notande Additioni di Geometria, Cosmographia, Arte navicatoria, et Stereometria, Proportioni, et Quantita delli Elementi, Distanze, Grandeze, et Movimenti di Tutti li Corpi Celesti, Cose certamente rade et maravigliose. Colophon: Venice, Bartholomeo Zanetti, 1537. 4to. Bound in 17th century yap-edged vellum
Scarce first edition of the first Italian-language Sacrobosco, composed by the Servite monk Mauro and containing an unusually rich program of illustrations. The work is further augmented by Mauro’s ‘additioni’ to the basic text of Sacrobosco and several appendices for the benefit of his vernacular reader, including the ‘secrets of the art of navigation’.

With a Double-Page Illustration of Viviani’s Home
A Shrine to his Mentor: Galileo Galilei

15. VIVIANI, Vincenzo. De Locis Solidis Secunda Divinatio Geometrica in Quinque Libros iniuria Temporum amissos Aristaei Senioris Geometrae […] Opus Conicum continens Elementa Tractatuum […]. Florence, Brigonci, 1701. Folio, with two folding engraved plates and an engraved portrait of Galileo bound at rear. Bound in contemporary cartonnage.


A large paper copy of this scarce final published work of Viviani, representing the culmination of his efforts to reconstruct a lost manuscript by Aristaeus the Elder on the exposition of curves. Nearing the end of his life, Viviani also took the opportunity of the present work’s publication to offer a final tribute to his mentor, Galileo: in 1693 Viviani had commenced the transformation of his own home into a veritable shrine to that figure, and here provides for the reader three engravings illustrating his ‘Casa Deo Data’.


Martayan Lan Rare Books
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