[MESMERISM]. Collection of 103 works in 70 volumes on mesmerism by various authors (includes a few by Mesmer when bound together or duplicated from lot 670). Various imprints, dates and formats. A rich collection of works on mesmerism, including both mesmerists and anti-mesmerists. For a more complete individual description of the works included, please consult the Haskell F. Norman Library of Science & Medicine private library catalogue (San Francisco, 1991), vol. II, pp. 872-907.
The spread of mesmerism in France alarmed not only the traditional doctors but also the government, and a royal commission was ordered to investigate the claims of the mesmerists. Among the distinguished doctors and academicians on this commission were Bailly, Lavoisier, and Franklin. In 1784 they reported not only that Mesmer's fluid was ineffectual in its ability to cure disease, but denied its existence at all. The report badly damaged the movement and it later dissolved into various schisms and heresies. Mesmer finally left his followers to their quarrels and, after a period of traveling through England, Austria, Germany, and Italy, settled in Switzerland, where he spent most of the last thirty years of his life in relative seclusion.
SELECTED HIGHLIGHTS INCLUDE:
MESMER. Lettre de M. Mesmer, M. le comte de C*** [drop title]. N.p., n.d. . 4o. First quarto edition. Crabtree 82; Darnton, pp. 85-86; Norman M20. -- [Bound with:] Charles Louis Franois ANDRY (1741-1829) and Michel Augustin THOURET (1748-1810). Extrait des registres de la Socit Royale de Mdecine. Rapport sur les aimans prsents par M. l'Abb le Noble [drop title]. Paris: P.D. Pierres, 1783. 4o. FIRST EDITION, in which the two found that magnets were particularly effective in treating nervous diseases. Crabtree 27 (with variant pagination); Norman M42. -- [Bound with:] Antoine COURT DE GBELIN (1725-1784). Lettre de l'auteur du Monde primitif, messieurs ses souscripteurs [drop title]. N.p.: Valleyre, 1783. 4o. FIRST EDITION. Crabtree 29; Darnton, pp. 116-117; Wellcome II, p.399; Norman M65. -- [Bound with:] COURT DE GBELIN. "Extrait d'une lettre de M. Court de Gebelin M. h....n, en date du 20 Mar. 1784," manuscript extract in an unknown late 18th-century hand. Late 18th-century, 2 pages, Gbelin's account in defense of Mesmer, relating how he relapsed into illness several months after his mesmeric cure, and how he was relieved again of his sufferings by a visit to Mesmer. -- [Bound with:] Charles d'ESLON (1750-1786). Observations sur les deux rapports de MM. les commissaires nomms par sa Majest, pour l'examen du magntisme animal. "Philadelphie" and Paris: Clousier and les marchands de nouveauts, 1784. 4o. FIRST EDITION. Crabtree 52; Wellcome II, p.530; Norman M81. -- [Bound with:] Expos des expriences qui ont t faites pour l'examen du magntisme animal. Paris: Imprimerie Royale, 1784. 4o. FIRST EDITION of the brief account of the experiments performed by the first commission appointed by the French government to investigate mesmerism. Crabtree 30; Norman M82. -- [Bound with:] Extrait des Registres de la Socit Royale de Mdicine. Sance de 24 aot 1784 [drop title]. Paris: Ph.-D. Pierres, 1784. 4o. FIRST EDITION of a brief prcis of the findings of the second commission. Norman M83. -- [Bound with:] Jean Franois FOURNEL (1745-1820). Mmoire pour Me. Charles-Louis Varnier, Docteur-Regent de la Facult de Mdecine ... appellant un dcret de la Facult; contre les doyen & docteurs de ladite Facult, intims. Paris: Veuve Herissant, 1785. 4o. FIRST EDITION of Fournel's appeal to the Parlement of Paris on behalf of Dr. Varnier, hwo had been expelled from the Facult de Mdecine for practicing animal magnetism. Crabtree 140; Norman M88. -- [Bound with:] Antoine Laurent de JUSSIEU (1748-1836). Rapport de l'un des commissaires chargs par le roi, de l'examen du magntisme animal. Paris: Veuve Herissant and Thophile Barrois, 1784. 4o. FIRST EDITION. Jussieu was a member of the second commission appointed by the French government to investigate mesmerism, and disagreed strongly with their conclusions and their condemnation of mesmerism. In repsonse he issued his own report supporting aspects of mesmerism, as well as presenting some of his own theories relating to animal heat. Crabtree 72; Norman M99. -- [Bound with:] Rapport des commissaires chargs par le roi, de l'examen du magntisme animal. Paris: Imprimerie Royale, 1784. 4o. FIRST EDITION of this important report of the first commission appointed to investigate animal magnetism. It consisted of nine members and was presided over by Benjamin Franklin, wno was the the United States Ambassador to France. After observing Eslon, who welcome and official inquiry (unlike Mesmer), the commission concluded that the mesmeric "fluid" did not exist and that the convulsions and other effects produced by animal magnetism were merely the products of the imagination. Crabtree 31; Darnton, pp. 62-64; Norman M124. -- Rapport des commissaires de la Socit Royale de Mdecine, nomms par le roi pour faire l'examen du magntisme animal. Paris: Imprimerie Royale, 1784. 4o. FIRST EDITION of the report of the second commission which also condemned mesmerism, but it was less influential than the first. Crabtree 101; Darnton, p. 62; Norman M131. -- Supplment aux deux rapports de MM. les commissaires de l'Acadmie & de la Facult de Mdecine, & de la Socit Royale de Mdecine. Amsterdam and Paris: Gueffier, 1784. 4o. FIRST EDITION. A collection of 111 case histories of mesmeric cures. Crabtree 33; Norman 147. -- Michel Augustin THOURET (1748-1810). Extrait de la correspondance de la Socit Royale de Mdecine, relativement au magntisme animal. Paris: Imprimerie Royale, 1785. 4o. FIRST EDITION of this collection of extracts from anti-mesmerest correspondents of the Socit Royale de Mdecine. Crabtree 154; Norman M151. 13 works in one volume, contemporary French mottled sheep gilt (some wear to joints at ends). Provenance: M. de Lamothe (engraved armorial bookplate). A FINE COLLECTION INCLUDING THE RARE QUARTO REPORTS.
[Jean Jacques Duval d'EPRMESNIL (1746-1794)]. Rflexions prliminaires, l'occasion de la pice intitule, les Docteurs Modernes, joue sur le Thtre Italien, le seize Novembre 1784 [drop title]. N.p., n.d. . 8o, 2 leaves. FIRST EDITION of Eprmesnil's protest to the anti-mesmerist play Les docteurs modernes, which was having a successful run at the Comdie Italienne. Copies of this pamphlet, which denounced the play as slander, were thronw from the upper balcony into the audience during one of the performances. Crabtree 57; Darnton, p. 65; Wellcome II, p.527; Norman M74. -- [EPRMESNIL]. Suite de rflexions prliminaires l'occasion des Docteurs modernes [drop title]. N.p., n.d. . 8o, 4 leaves. FIRST EDITION of Eprmesnil's second pamphlet, a longer statement of his faith in mesmerism, which were also disseminated from the balcony during a performance of Les docteurs modernes. Crabtree 58; Darnton, p. 65; Wellcome II, p.527; Norman M75. TWO VERY RARE EPHEMERAL ITEMS.
Report of Dr. Benjamin Franklin, and other commissioners, charged by the King of France, with the examination of the Animal Magnetism, as now practised at Paris. Translated from the French. London: for J. Johnson, 1785. 8o, disbound. FIRST EDITION IN ENGLISH. Also includes an English translation of the Rapport de la Socit Royale de Mdecine, intitule "Recherches et doutes sur le magntisme animal" (1784). Norman M127.
"Rapport secret sur le mesmrism," in: Le conservateur I, pp. 146-55. Paris: Crapelet, 1799/1800. 2 volumes, 8o, contemporary tree calf gilt. FIRST EDITION of the government commission's "secret report" on the possible deleterious effects of mesmerism on sexual morality. "Becauxe of its delicate subject matter, this report was not included in the Rapport des commissaires (see quarto report volume above), but submitted privately in manuscript to the king. The report contains valuable information on mesmeric procedures, which did involve touching and close physical proximity" (Norman). Crabtree 213; Norman M132.
[Noel de Rochefort RETZ (d. ca. 1810)]. Mmoire pour servir l'histoire de la jonglerie, dans lequel on dmontre les phnomnes du mesmrisme. London and Paris: Mquignon an, 1784. Engraved frontispiece. 8o, original plain brown wrappers. VERY RARE FIRST EDITION. Retz linked the practice of animal magnetism to other healing impostures perpetrated throughout the ages, such as Gassner's exorcisms, Digby's sympathetic powder and Greatrakes' "stroking" cures. EXTREMELY RARE. See Crabtree 109 (stating that the second edition "seems to be the only one still extant") and Dureau, p. 38 (also describing only the second edition); Norman M137.
SOCIT D'HARMONIE UNIVERSELLE DE FRANCE. Rglements prsents la Socit de l'Harmonie de France, par le comit nomm cet effet, par l'Assemble gnrale du mois de Juillet 1784. N.p., n.d. [1785?]. 4o, stitched. FIRST EDITION, containing forty-five rules of the Society. Norman M145.
[VILLIERS, Charles de (1765-1815)]. Le mangtiseur amoureux. Edited by the Marquis de Chastenet de Puysgur. Paris: Chez Dentu, 1824. 2 volumes in one, 8o, modern marbled boards. Second edition. Villers was a memeber of the Socit d'Harmonie Universelle and a friend of the de Puysgur, who issued this slightly revised second edition. Viller's novel "is as much a theoretical treatise on animal mangetism as it is a work of fiction ... Villers, more than any other writer of the age, emphasized the psychological interaction of the magnetic relationship" (Crabtree). The first edition was largely destroyed by the minister of police and only one known copy survives. This second edition is also quite rare, as de Puysgur decided to destroy this new edition after its publication. See Crabtree 175; Norman M152A.
Journal de Paris, nos. 1-182, plus supplements (1 January-30 June 1784). Paris: Quillau, 1784. 4o. Together 182 issues (plus supplements) in one volume, 4o, contemporary sheep-backed boards. Contains numerous items related to Mesmer and mesmerism. See Norman for a further listing of contents. Darnton, p. 40; Norman M98.
Comte de LTZELBOURG, editor. Manuscript entitled "Cahiers d'instructions sur le magntisme l'usage du Collge des Fondateurs de la Socit Harmonique des Amis Reunis de Strasbourg," [Strassburg], 1785. 149 pages, written on rectos and most versos, 19th-century quarter sheep. Provenance: M. Robilare (signature); Bibliothue du Magntisme (bookplate). A student of the Marquis de Chastenet de Puysgur, the comte de Ltzelbourg was the perpetual syndic of the Socit Harmonique des Amis Reunis de Strasbourg, one of the most active chapters of the Socit de l'Harmonie Universelle. This manuscript for instruction is divided into two parts, or "Cahiers d'instruction." The first part is based on Mesmer's system and the second on the system of Chastenet de Puysgur. Bound in at the end are two printed documents, accomplished in manuscripts, stating the conditions of membership for corresponding members: the first, issued to David Burges is dated 5 January 1790; the second and third (duplicates) are both issued to Monsieur Kernn and dated 1787 (both accomplished in manuscript and signed by the secretary of the Socit, de Moug.
SIBLY, Ebenezer (d. 1800). A Key to Physic, and the Occult Sciences. London: for the author, n.d. [circa 1795]. 4o. 13 engraved plates (8 hand-colored and 4 color-printed) by Prattent and J. Pass after Dodd. 19th-century reverse calf (rebacked). Provenance: Joseph Healey, 1806 (gilt-lettered lettering piece on cover). -- [Bound with:] Appendix to Culpeper's British Herbal [drop title]. N.p., n.d. 4o. 17 hand-colored engraved plates, including 8 by Barlow, J. Pass and Prattent after Dodd and others.
DELEUZE, Joseph Philippe Franois (1753-1835). Histoire critique du magntisme animal. Paris: Mame, 1813. 2 volumes, 8o, origina wrappers, printed spine labels, uncut. FIRST EDITION of Deleuze's attempt to answer the legitimate criticisms made of animal magnetism. Crabtree 243; Norman M67.
DRAKE, Daniel (1785-1852). Analytical Report of a series of experiments in Mesmeric Somniloquism, performed by an association of gentlemen. Louisville: F.W. Prescott, 1844. 8o, disbound. FIRST EDITION. Crabtree 494; Norman M70.
[BARBEGUIERE, J.B.]. La maonnerie mesmerienne ... par mr. J.B.B****. Amsterdam: n.p., 1784. 8o. FIRST EDITION. Crabtree 34; Norman M48. -- [Bound with:] Jean Jacques PAULET. L'antimagntisme ou origine, progrs, dcadence, renouvellement et rfutation du magntisme animal. London: n.p., 1784. 8o. Engraved satirical frontispiece (possibly hand-shaded with graphite). FIRST EDITION. Crabtree 94; Norman M117. -- [Bound with:] 5 other works (Norman M69, M89, M116, M118, and M142); together 7 works in one volume, contemporary sheep-backed boards. Provenance: Jesuit College, Poitiers (label), and Bruges (bookplate); index of titles on front free endpaper in an 18th-century hand.
[CAMBRY, Jacques (1749-1807)]. Traces du magntisme. The Hague: n.p., 1784. 8o. FIRST EDITION. Crabtree 46; Norman M57. -- [Bound with:] 3 other works (Norman M49, M119, and M120); together 4 works in one volume, 18th-century mottled calf gilt.
POE, Edgar Allan (1809-1849). Mesmerism "in articulo mortis." An astounding and horrifying narrative, shewing the extraordinary powers of mesmerism in arresting the progress of death. London: Short & Co., 1846. 8o, 19th-century calf gilt. Provenance: Walter Chrysler (bookplate); John A. Spoor (bookplate). FIRST SEPARATE PRINTING. BAL 16151; Heartman-Canny, Poe, p. 111; Norman M123.
The remaining items in this lot comprise Norman: (M8, M78), (M12, M80), M43, M45, M46, M47, (M51, M53, M55, M58, M103, M133, M136), M56, M59, M60, M61, M62, (M63, M143, M144, M146), M64, M68, M72, M73, M84, M85, (M90, M112, M126), M91, M92, M93, M94, M95, M96, M97, M100, M101, M102, M105, M107, M108, M109 (2 vols.), M110, M111, M113, M114, M121, M122, M125, M128, M129, M131, M134, M135, (M138, M139), M140, M141, M148, M150, and M152.