07-20-2018 07-20-2018
Skinner Auctions
Skinner Auctions Boston MA
3117B Boston
July 20, 2018 12:00 PMCalender

Porta, Giambattista della (1535?-1615) Natural Magick.

Auction: Books & Manuscripts - 3117B Location: Boston Date / Time: July 20, 2018 12:00PM


Porta, Giambattista della (1535?-1615) Natural Magick. London: Printed for Thomas Young and Samuel Speed, and are to be sold at the Three Pigeons, and at the Angel in St. Paul's Church-yard, 1658. First edition in English, folio, engraved title incorporating representations of fire, chaos, air, art, nature, earth, water and Porta (remargined); typographical title printed in red and black, ex libris Alexander Watt, with his bookplate pasted inside the front board; text woodcuts throughout, some light foxing, some leaves remargined, some browning to text leaves; bound in calf boards, rebacked, 11 x 7 in.

Porta's imaginative work contains many medical treatments, folk recipes, and instructions for crafts possible and implausible. He proposes that a dog may be generated from a tiger, that burning hare's fat in a lamp will make ladies remove their clothes and dance in the nude, and ways to produce monstrous births. He writes a chapter on increasing "Houshold-stuffe," which contains recipes and instructions on preserving food. Other chapters are on changing metals, counterfeiting precious stones, the wonders of the loadstone, physical experiments, beautifying women, distillation, optics, perfuming, artificial fires, and more.

[pi]2 (engraved and typographical title, C2, D-Z4, Aa-Zz4, Aaa-Iii4.
Estimate $2,000-3,000

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Alexander Watt, Thomas Young, Samuel Speed, London