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[MAGNETISM]. ALENCE, Joachim d'. Curieux traitte de l'aiman. Divisé en deux parties. La prémiére contient les expériences; & la seconde les raisons que l'on en peut rendre.

Paris. 1712.
8vo. [2], 87pp, [9]. With extra-engraved title and 33 engraved plates. Eighteenth-century vellum-backed marbled boards. A little rubbed, plate No. 31 slightly shaved, somewhat toned, bookseller's label of W. Junk, Berlin, indistinct library stamps to verso of title. From the recently dispersed Beltrame collection, without inscription.
A lavishly illustrated work on magnetism, and a significant work in the history of the physical sciences. Joachim d'Alence (d.1707) was a prolific author of works on physics and measuring instruments like thermometers, barometers and hydrometers. First published in 1687, his Traitte was entirely devoted to magnetism, expounding theories of notable predecessors, such as Athanasius Kircher. This volume analyses the nature and workings of magnets, with a final section devoted to machines or mechanisms which can be built with magnets. One is the 'divining dish', a shallow basin with water and a floating magnet, based on Kircher's idea; another is the magnetic timepiece. The numerous engravings illustrate d'Alence’s experiments.
£ 375.00 Antiquates Ref: 16685