Sep 26, 2019 - Sale 2517

Sale 2517 - Lot 278

Price Realized: $ 1,625
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 800 - $ 1,200
(MEXICAN IMPRINT--1690.) [Sigüenza y Góngora, Carlos de.] [Libra astronomica, y philosophica.] Woodcut illustrations in the text. [20 of 24], 182 [of 188] pages. 4to, disbound, laid into period vellum binding; lacking half-title, title page, half of leaf O3, leaf T2, and final 3 leaves, moderate dampstaining and wear; inked library stamp on first page. Mexico: herederos de la viuda de Bernardo Calderón, 1690

Additional Details

A defective copy of "one of the first scientific books written by a native Latin American to be published in the New World"--Haskell F. Norman Library 1944. Sigüenza was a native of Mexico City, and became a professor of mathematics at the Universidad de Mexico. When a comet appeared in 1680, he issued a broadside which used scientific arguments to assure the public that it was not an omen of doom. This brought a harsh response from Jesuit Eusebio Kino. In 1690, Sigüenza had the last word with the present work, Libra Astronomica. "A book of great importance for its sound mathematical background, anti-Aristotelian outlook, and familiarity with modern authors: Copernicus, Galileo, Descartes, Kepler, and Tycho Brahe"--DSB XII, 431. Medina, Mexico 1484; Palau 312974; Sabin 80976. See also More's article on the Sigüenza-Kino battle, "Cosmopolitanism and Scientific Reason in New Spain," in Science in the Spanish and Portuguese Empires, pages 115-131.