VITRUVIUS POLLIO, Marcus. The Architecture of... Translated from the Latin by W. Newton. London: James Newton, 1791.
2 volumes, 2o (472 x 316 mm). 2-page publisher's advertisement at end of volume two. Engraved frontispiece and 46 plates (some spotting). Contemporary half calf, marbled boards (extremities worn, spines cracked, some pages loose.) Provenance: George Aitchison A.R.A. (1825-1910), architect (signature and bookplates); W. Gedney Beatty (1869-1941), American architect (gifted to): The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Department of Prints (bookplate recording the bequest, cancelled).
FIRST EDITION of volume two, reissue of the sheets of volume one which was first issued in 1771. From the library of esteemed British Architect George Aitchison ARA and RA, designer of innovative wharves and warehouses along the Thames. With the slip "James Newton... " pasted over the names of the booksellers in the imprint of both volumes, plates unnumbered in both volumes. William Newton's (1735-1790) is the earliest English translation of the first five books of Vitruvius. Brunet V:1331; Cicognara 736; Fowler 425, 428.
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PAPWORTH, Wyatt Angelicus van Sandau (1822-1894). Two autograph letters signed ("Wyatt Papworth"), to George Aitchison, 33 Bloomsbury Street, W6, 19 November 1887 and 6 December 1887. 2pp., and 3pp., 8vo. Regarding the identity of the translator James Newton: "...that he was, 1782, clerk of the works to Stuart's restoration of the chapel at Greenwich Hospital after the Fire... This Newton may be the same person who translated the Vitruvius 1771 & 1791 & who died before 1794 - perhaps in 1792 or 93..." Papworth was founding editor of the definitive Dictionary of Architecture, the first part of which was published in 1853 and the last in 1892. (2)