GLANVILL, Joseph (1636-1680). Essays on several important subjects in philosophy and religion. London: by J. D. for John Baker and Henry Mortlock, 1676.
4o (220 x 172 mm). 2-pp. errata (a4), 2 leaves publisher's advertisements at end. Contemporary black morocco by the Queen's Binder A (probably William Nott), covers tooled in gold to an all-over design of drawer-handle tools, pointill volutes, solid and pointill fleurons including a large pointill tulip-flower tool, and dots, within a roll-tooled border, the volutes and floral tools infilled with silver paint, spine in six compartments, red morocco lettering-piece in the second, the remainder with central assemblage of small pointill leaf tools picked out with black paint and framed by gilt volutes, gilt edges (slight wear to head and tail of spine, joints and board edges, corners a trifle bumped); folding cloth case.
Provenance: Bound for the dedicatee Henry Somerset (1629-1700), first Duke of Beaufort (Badminton House library shelfmark on front free endleaf).
THE DEDICATION COPY of this collection of Glanvill's essays, of which the third reviews some of Robert Boyle's works and praises Harvey's discovery of the circulation of the blood, and the sixth recapitulates the arguments in favor of the existence of witches that Glanvill had set forth in his Philosophical endeavour towards the defence of the being of witches (1666). "Glanvill attempted to establish a scientific and philosophical basis for a belief in the supernatural, and is generally considered to be the founder of psychical research" (Norman).
The fine English restoration binding is by the Queens' Binder A, identified by Howard Nixon as the bookseller-binder William Nott on the basis of an entry in Samuel Pepys' diary concerning the Lord Chancellor Clarendon's binder William Nott, from whom Pepys ordered a binding. The latter book was identified by Nixon and the tools were found to be those of the Queens' Binder A, as are those on several books in Clarendon's library (cf. Nixon, English Restoration Bookbindings, p. 34). NLM/Krivatsy 4748; Wing G-809; Norman 908.