5 April 2016
FOURNIER, Georges (1595-1652). Hydrographie contenant la theorie et la pratique de toutes les parties de la navigation. Paris: Michel Soly, 1643.
2° (352 x 225 mm). Title printed in red and black with large woodcut vignette, large folding table, woodcut illustrations and diagrams. (Title gutter margin repaired, Qqq2-3, Yyy and YYYyy supplied from another copy, tiny wormtrack in gutter margin of Q-S, TTTtt2 with loss in fore-margin, scattered pale spotting.) Contemporary calf over wooden boards, elaborately blind-tooled, centrally gilt-stamped coat-of-arms on front cover, centrally gilt-stamped tool of a man on horseback on back cover (rebacked to match). Provenance: T. Pollard (signature on pastedown).
FIRST EDITION of this important text book on navigation. Fournier was professor of mathematics and prefect of the Jesuit college in Caen and first published this text in 1643. The most important parts of the work are the eighth, dealing with navigation in general, and the tenth, dealing with instruments of navigation (astrolabes, quadrants, nocturnals, etc.) The eleventh book is entirely devoted to the compass. The fourteenth and sixteenth parts deal with sea charts and are of importance for English navigation, as they were used by English mariners before the "English Pilot" called the "Hydrographer Royal" appeared in 1671. Nicolas de Nicolay's French translation of the report on James V of Scotland's navigation around his kingdom is reprinted at the end. De Backer & Sommervogel III:909.
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