PORTA, GIOVANNI BAPTISTA DELLA. De Distillatione Lib. IX. Rome: Camera Apostolica, 1608.
4to, 219 x 149 mm., later 17th-century calf, joints restored, corners rubbed, minor staining to K1r, a few very small light dampstains to outer blank margins.
FIRST EDITION, laudatory epigrams in Hebrew, Greek, Chaldean, Arabic, Slavonic and Armenian, each with accompanying Latin translation, woodcut device of the author on title, full-page engraved portrait of the author by I. Laurus, 35 woodcut illustrations in the text, woodcut initials, ruled in red.
A very good copy of Porta's rare treatise on distillation, the most comprehensive survey yet published of the techniques and applications of distillation in the sixteenth century. The nine books describe the various methods of distillation, methods of extraction, preparation of plant distillates and scented distilled waters, oils distilled from resins and woods, the distillation of corrosove mineral acids and their properties, the distillation of alcohol from wine and the preparation of various ointments. "Among the many fine woodcuts contained in the book, the most curious are those depicting pieces of apparatus likened to different animals" (Duveen).
Duveen, p. 481; Ferguson II, 216; Norman 1724.
Provenance: Kenneth K. Mackenzie; Horticultural Society of New York, bookplate and blindstamp.