Of Natural Philosophy

Aberdeen: [1810]. Contemporary half calf. 8vo. Contemporary half calf with marble boards; spine gilt with label of black morocco gilt, edges speckled black, binding with fine repair to spine. Collation: [iv], 298pp. + 11 full-page illustrations and 1 fold-out (10 in colour, two in black and white). Neat cursive script, 24 lines per page. Forty four (44) colored illustrations present in text. Light browning, minor staining to foldout illustration. Paper watermarked C. Wilmott 1807. A fine rare and attractive manuscript of science course notes, probably following the natural philosophy course of Robert Eden Scott of King's College Aberdeen (1769-1811), and offering insight into the teaching of physics at the height of the Industrial Revolution. The compiler was one William Watt, who was a student at the college 1806-1810, and who neatly adds his name to one of his careful illustrations, at end. Those illustrations include one of the famous Boulton and Watt steam engine of his namesake James Watt (we have been unable to establish if they were related). It appears that William Watt may have used diagrams present in the 1805 edition of James Ferguson's 'Lectures on Select Subjects in Mechanics', and also from Olinthus Gregory's 'Treatise of Mechanics' (1806) as guide in preparing those included in this manuscript.The volume begins with an introduction to natural philosophy, which is followed by a section on the general rules of physics. The section following, although not titled, appears to be a study of movement, with individual chapters on the center of gravity, mechanics, the lever, pulley, axis in peritrochio, inclined plain, wedge, screw, machines in general, friction, wheeled carriages, the pendulum, and projectiles. The third part is on hydrostatics, the fourth on pneumatics, the fifth on electricity, the sixth on magnetism, and the seventh on optics. This part has chapters on light and refraction, lenses, dioptrics, particular lenses, vision, catoptrics, chromatics, telescopes (the astronomical telescope, Galilean telescope, terrestrial telescope, Newtonian reflector, and Gregorian telescope) and microscopes (the double microscope and solar microscope).Watt's full-page illustrations individually depict the telescopes and microscopes, and also the magic lantern, the camera obscura, and a meal mill, air pump, and fire engine, besides the Boulton and Watt engine. (Research provided by Dr. Ben Marsden of University of Aberdeen). Very Good. Item #0000641

Price: $5,000.00

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