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Stephen Hales & Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon - La Statique des Vegetaux et l'Analyse de l'Air - 1735

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Botanikk, Illustrert, Kjemi, Naturhistorie, Vitenskap (generell) - Mengde: 1 - Signert av forfattere

Objekt: Bok
Antall bøker: 1
Subjekt: Botanikk, Illustrert, Kjemi, Naturhistorie, Vitenskap (generell)
Forfatter/ Illustrator: Stephen Hales & Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon
Boktittel: La Statique des Vegetaux et l'Analyse de l'Air
Tilstand: Veldig god
Publiseringsår: 1735
Utgave: 1. utgave
Språk: Fransk
Versjon: Originalspråk
Forlegger: Debure
Binding: Lær
Tillegg: Signert av forfattere


A PRESENTATION COPY OF THE 1735 FIRST EDITION OF GEORGES-LOUIS LECLERC, COMTE DE BUFFON’S FIRST PUBLISHED WORK, THE ‘STATIQUE VEGETAUX’ (or ‘Vegetable Staticks’) OF STEPHEN HALES, INSCRIBED FROM BUFFON TO CYNOT DE CHARANCIN. The hand is clearly that of Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon, as any comparison with a contemporary letter of Buffon’s will show.


The volume was printed at Paris for Debure l’aine in quarto in 1735. It is BEAUTIFULLY BOUND IN MID-18TH CENTURY FRENCH SPECKLED CALF, contemporary to the time of publication. The volume is in very good to excellent condition and complete in all respects. It is ILLUSTRATED BY 20 ENGRAVED PLATES on 10 folding sheets.

The full title reads as follows:

“La Statique des Vegetaux, et l’Analyse de l’Air / Experiences Nouvelles / Lues a la Societe Royale de Londres. / Par M. Hales D. D. & Membre de cette Societe. / Ouvrage traduit de l’Anglois, par M. De Buffon, de l’Academie Royale des Sciences. / A Paris, / Chez Debure l’aine, a l’entrée du Quay des Augustins, du cote du Pont Saint Michel, a Saint Paul. / M. DCC. XXXV [1735].”


‘Ex Dono authoris’ means ‘From the gift of the author’ or, more simply, ‘The author’s gift.’

There could of course only ever be two candidates for the author of the inscription on the title, both important: one would be Stephen Hales, the author of the ‘Vegetable Staticks’ in English; the author would be Buffon, the author of the translation. That the inscription is not in Hales’ hand can be established by comparison with the note dated 1739 at the following link where Hales pays his compliments to Buffon:


Conversely, the handwriting of Buffon’s ownership inscription, also dated 1739, matches very closely the hand of the inscription on the presentation copy offered here. Indeed, the Buffon’s hand in 1750, as evinced by the letter at the following link: http://www.icollector.com/Georges-Louis-Leclerc-Comte-de-Buffon_i28063575 remains a close match to the hand of the presentation inscription in the copy being offered here.

THE VOLUME IS COMPLETE IN ALL RESPECTS. It is paginated as follows: (2), xviii, (8), 408, (2). It measures about 25.8 cm by 20.2 cm by 4.3 cm; each leaf measures about 252 mm by 189 mm.

THE VOLUME IS IN VERY GOOD TO EXCELLENT CONDITION. It is bound in full mid-18th century French speckled calf, contemporary to the time of publication. The spine is divided by raised and gilt bands into 6 compartments, with the original brown morocco label in the second compartment from the head. The edges of the boards are gilt, as are the borders. The original hand-marbled endpapers have been retained.

The book-block and hinges are very strong, the gilt is fresh and bright, and the binding shows only minor wear at the edges and corners. The boards are a little bowed.

INTERNALLY, the leaves are generally bright and clean, with clear print and ample margins throughout. The plates are excellent impressions. The title shows a very small worm-track in the blank upper margin. It is also a little toned, as is the occasional leaf elsewhere; the four leaves of gathering Ss are moderately toned. There is a relatively minor dampstain at the lower outer corner of the final fifth of the volume; it extends into the text but does not affect legibility or the integrity of the paper.

GEORGES-LOUIS LECLERC, COMTE DE BUFFON (7 September 1707 – 16 April 1788) was a French naturalist, mathematician, cosmologist, and encyclopédiste. His works influenced the next two generations of naturalists, including Jean-Baptiste Lamarck and Georges Cuvier. Buffon published thirty-six quarto volumes of his ‘Histoire Naturelle, Generale et Particuliere’ during his lifetime; with additional volumes based on his notes and further research being published in the two decades following his death.

Ernst Mayr wrote that "Truly, Buffon was the father of all thought in natural history in the second half of the 18th century.” Buffon held the position of intendant (director) at the Jardin du Roi, now called the Jardin des Plantes.

Buffon’s ‘La Statique des Vegetaux’ was his first published work and placed him firmly on the path of an important career in natural history and biodiversity. He became, quite simply, the most important natural historian between the Renaissance and George Cuvier, and his ‘Histoire Naturelle’ – the clear successor of the ‘Statique des Vegetaux’ – has a strong claim to being the most important, influential and aesthetically beautiful work of natural history and biology published during the 18th century. It was essential to the development of thought concerning evolution.

Plesch describes the volume offered here in the following terms:

“"The first publ. book of the renowned Buffon was his translation of ‘Vegetable Staticks,’ 1727. Hales’ book is an important one, and this translation is almost equally important; it contains the appendix first publ. in 1733 … and an original preface by Buffon, which became famous for its praise of the experiment method.”


Stephen Hales (17 September 1677 – 4 January 1761), was an English clergyman who made major contributions to a range of scientific fields including botany, pneumatic chemistry and physiology. He was the first person to measure blood pressure. He also invented several devices, including a ventilator, a pneumatic trough and a surgical forceps for the removal of bladder stones. In addition to these achievements, he was a philanthropist and wrote a popular tract on alcoholic intemperance.

Hales is best known for his Statical Essays. The first work, Vegetable Staticks (1727), contains an account of experiments in plant physiology and chemistry; it was translated into French by Buffon in 1735. The second work, Haemastaticks (1733), describes experiments on animal physiology including the measurement of the "force of the blood", i.e. blood pressure.

In ‘Vegetable Staticks,’ Hales studied transpiration – the loss of water from the leaves of plants. He estimated the surface area of the leaves of the plant and the length and surface area of the roots. This allowed Hales to compare the calculated influx of water into the plant with the amount of water leaving the plant by transpiration through the leaves. He also measured 'the force of the sap' or root pressure. Hales commented that "plants very probably draw through their leaves some part of their nourishment from the air". In Vegetable Staticks Hales prefigured the cohesion theory of water movement in plants, although his ideas were not understood at the time, so he did not influence the debate on water transport in plants in the 19th century. He also speculated that plants might use light as a source of energy for growth (i.e. photosynthesis), based on Isaac Newton’s suggestion that "gross bodies and light" might be interconvertible.

Again in ‘Vegetable Staticks,’ Hales also described experiments that showed that "… air freely enters plants, not only with the principal fund of nourishment by the roots, but also thro’ the surface of their trunks and leaves". While Hales’ work on the chemistry of air appears primitive by modern standards, its importance was acknowledged by Antoine Lavoisier, the discoverer of oxygen. Hales’ invention of the pneumatic trough to collect gases over water is also considered a major technical advance. Modified forms of the pneumatic trough were later used by William Brownrigg, Henry Cavendish and Joseph Priestley in their research.

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Score på tilbakemeldinger: 100%
Anmeldelser gitt: 24
Medlem siden: 28 februar 2017
  • I am very pleased

    floradanica 3 juli 2018

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    Livraison rapide.
    Très bon vendeur
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    agnesetpat 16 juni 2018

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    The books are great and arrived well-wrapped and in great shape. Thanks very much
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    user-85b35c9 27 mars 2018

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    Accurately described, safely packed and quickly shipped- Excellent seller
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    Rickw33 24 mars 2018

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    hjcatawiki 21 januar 2018

  • Merk: Noen elementer på denne siden har blitt oversatt automatisk.
    finalmente dopo tanta attesa,ho ricevuto il pacco. Tutto bene!Ho dovuto pero'anche pagare in piu' i diritti doganali di € 10,13.
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    nazariomaddii 15 januar 2018

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    Tutto bene libro arrivato oggi
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    tukulka 15 januar 2018

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    tutto bene.tutto o.k.
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    nazariomaddii 10 januar 2018

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    magnifique à recommander
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    GRANGIL 13 desember 2017

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    Very reliable seller!
    Vendeur très fiable!
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    Preperandus 7 november 2017

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    Nice book!
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    Booy 4 august 2017

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