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LEEUWENHOEK, Antoni van (1632-1723). Ondervindingen en Beschouwingen der onsigbare geschapene waarheden, waar in gehandeld werd vande Eyerstok, ende derselver ingebeelde Eyeren, dat een Mensch uyt een Dierken voort komt. Leiden: Daniel van Gaesbeeck, 1684.

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LEEUWENHOEK, Antoni van (1632-1723). Ondervindingen en Beschouwingen der onsigbare geschapene waarheden, waar in gehandeld werd vande Eyerstok, ende derselver ingebeelde Eyeren, dat een Mensch uyt een Dierken voort komt. Leiden: Daniel van Gaesbeeck, 1684.

4o (195 x 155 mm). Letters 37 and 39. 7 text engravings. Bound with eight other editions of various letters of Leewenhoek and the 1695 Register [see below]. Contemporary vellum over pasteboard, manuscript title on spine, "...Leeuwenhoek Brieven I 1685" (slight tearing along front joint, endpapers renewed).

FIRST EDITION of letters 37 and 39, the latter, addressed to François Aston and dated 12 September 1683, containing Leewenhoek's famous description and illustration of bacteria scraped from his own teeth (cf. PMM 166). Dobell 2; Norman 1303; Grolier Medicine 1303; cf. Printing and the Mind of Man 166.

Remaining contents (in order of binding):

1) Letters 28-31 and 34-36. Leiden 1686. Additional engraved title after Romeyn de Hooghe, 3 engraved plates of which 2 folding. Dobell 8; Norman 1309.
2) Letters 38, 42 and 43. Leiden 1691. Second Dutch edition. Dobell 5a; Norman 1313.
3) Letters 44-45. Leiden 1685. Folding engraved plate. (Some worming in gutters.) Letter 45 contains Leewenhoek's first observations of spermatoazoa. Dobell 6; Norman 1307.
4) Letters 46-47. Leiden 1685. Folding engraved plate. Dobell 7; Norman 1308.
5) Letters 48-52. Leiden 1686. Folding plate. Dobell 9; Norman 1310.
6) Letters 32, 33 and 39. Delft 1694. Second edition. Not in Dobell; Norman 1302.
7) Letter 40. Leiden 1685. Dobell 3; Norman 1305.
8) Letter 41. Leiden 1684. Dobell 4; Norman 1306.
9) Letters 37 and 39: see above.
10) Register van alle de Werken van Antoni van Leeuwenhoek. Leiden: C. Boutesteyn, 1695. 34 pp.

All works with engravings in text, woodcut title vignettes. (Slight marginal browning, engraved title to first work slightly frayed, short tear to first folding plate, occasional minor marginal dampstaining.) A fine collection of some of the most important letters by the founder of microbiology, FIRST EDITIONS except as described.
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