Title: Astronomical dialogues between a Gentleman ...
Publisher: T. Wood, for Benj. Cowse
Publication Date: 1719
Book Condition: Very Good
First edition. ,Title-page, vi, 184 printed pages, 6 engraved plates (4 folding). Contemporary ink signature of Dorothy Hooper and previously crossed out writing on front pastedown endpaper; unnumbered blank preliminary leaf torn with small loss. All edges speckled. 12.5 x 20 cm. Contemporary speckled, panelled calf. Board edges gilt tooled (mildly worn). Spine in six compartments, with five gilt ruled raised bands, two deep brown leather labels with gilt lettering, slightly worn at the foot of the spine; otherwise glowing with three hundred years of natural patination. An Anglican clergyman and fellow of the Royal Society, John Harris FRS (c.1666-1719) was an important promulgator of Newtonian science, through private teaching, public lectures and published writing; he was a colleague with fellow astrologers Edmond Halley, John Kendal and Henry Coley. Clock makers George Graham and Thomas Tompion built the first modern orrery around 1704 in England. An orrery is a mechanical model of the Solar System that illustrates or predicts the relative positions and motions of the planets and moons, usually according to the heliocentric model. Graham gave the first model, or its design, to the celebrated instrument maker John Rowley of London to make a copy for Prince Eugene of Savoy & for his patron Charles Boyle, 4th Earl of Orrery, from which the device took its name in English. The term orrery has only existed since 1714 and this is the first printed book to use the word in its title and to illustrate it. Dorothy Hooper was daughter of Anthony Ashley-Cooper, 2nd Earl of Shaftesbury Bt (1652-99), known as Lord Ashley from 1672 to 1683, an English peer and Member of Parliament; Dorothy was married to Edward Hooper of Heron (or Hurn) Court, Christchurch, Hampshire and mother of Edward Hooper, FRS, (1702-95) of Worthy Park, Hampshire -a British lawyer and Whig Member of Parliament 1734-48. Dorothy's son & the author were both Fellows of the Royal Society during the same period and slightly after Isaac Newton. ESTC T113347. Two copies located in the UK at the Britiah Library & Wellcome Library. Bookseller Inventory # 4401