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BESSON, Jacques (c. 1540--1571)
[Theatrum instrumentorum et machinarum. French]
Theatre des instrvmens mathematiques & mechaniques de Iaques Besson Dauphinois, docte mathematicien. Avec l'interpretation des figures d'iceluy, par François Beroald.
A Lyon par Barthelemy Vincent, 1579.
[46] p., 60 pl. ; 41.5 cm. (2°)

The title is set in an elaborate woodcut architectural cartouche depicting Geometria and her supporters. With a dedication to François d'Hastings (i.e. Sir Francis Hastings (d. 1601)). The first edition was published in Orléans in 1569 or slightly later with etchings by Jacques Androuet du Cerceau and others. Four plates were re-etched by René Boyvin (Robert-Dumesnil 180--183) for this later version of the work with Béroalde's commentary, which was first published (in probably simultaneous French and Latin editions) in Lyon in 1578. The Soane copy has three unsigned leaves Χ1-2,3 inserted between leaves A2 (Béroalde's dedication to Hastings) and A3 (recto: verse dedications to Hastings; verso: 'Preface Av Lectevr.'). No other copies with these additional leaves, containing the text of the preface to the reader in Latin and French with the two final sentences omitted (Χ1) and a French translation of the plate captions (Χ2,3) have been traced.

Copy Notes Bought from Thomas Boone for 4s. 6d. on 16 July 1807. (Spiers Box). Inscribed by Boone in pencil on front pastedown 60 Plates 4s--6d. Inscribed in ink on the title-page G Stubbs (according to Judy Egerton not by the painter George Stubbs).

Binding Contemporary vellum, spine with title and author inscribed in ink.

Reference Number 1696


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