SAVERY, Thomas (1650?-1715). The Miner's Friend; or, An Engine to Raise Water bt Fire, Described. And the Manner pof Fixing it in Mines. With An Account of the several other Uses it is applicable unto; and an Answer to the Objections made against it. London: S. Crouch, 1702.
8o (177 x 110mm). Folding engraved plate by I. Sturt after B. Lens (detailed keyed diagram of the steam-pump mechanism and its installation in a mineshaft). (Bound without final blank, small early reinforcement to verso of plate). Contemporary English red morocco, covers gilt-panelled with small fleurons at corners, spine compartments gilt with an S-shaped volute tool, gilt edges (front hinge cracked and hinge a bit worn, two corners rubbed). Provenance: William Hanbury of Kelmarsh, Northamptonshire (d.1768), a member of the Royal Society (engraved armorial bookplate); front flyleaf with ink inscription: "C.P. Feb 28 1759 0.2.0."
FIRST EDITION, A TALL, ATTRACTIVELY BOUND COPY of Savery's description of his steam pump which, "though not a steam engine in the modern sense of the word, embodied the first practical application of the force of steam to mechanical purposes" (DNB). His device, patented in 1698 and demonstrated before the Royal Society in 1699, "was a condensing type engine in which the steam was caused to condense within a receiver, thereby creating a vacuum and raising water to be pumped up within connected pipes" (Dibner). While designed specifically to pump water from deep mine-shafts (as shown in Sturt's plate), Savery's invention, with some modifications by Thomas Newcomen, was found adaptable to supplying water to tall buildings and produce mechanical power by raising water to turn waterwheels. In 1712 the first working device was installed in the Warwichshire coal mines, allowing deeper shafts to be worked. RARE. Dibner 177 (article published in Phil. Trans. Royal Society, 1699); Honeyman sale 2766; Norman 1895.