De Calculo Renum & Vesicae liber singularis. Cum epistolis & consultationibus magnorum virorum.

Lugd. Batav. [Leiden]: Ex Officina Elseviriorum, .1638

12mo, pp. (xvi), 305, (15). Contemporary calf, spine gilt with red morocco label (spine and corners neatly repaired), marbled endpapers. Small area of leather on lower cover pitted, a little foxing, but a very good copy.

FIRST EDITION. The first part of this book (pp. 1–208) contains Beverwyck’s treatise on calculi in the kidney and bladder. The second part (pp. 209–305) contains letters addressed by Beverwyck to some prominent physicians whom he consulted on that subject, with their replies, followed by several consilia by Santorio, Spiegel, Horst, et al. Beverwyck, physician and professor of medicine at Dordrecht and a relative of Vesalius, wrote a letter to William Harvey at the end of 1637, in which he expressed his admiration for Harvey’s discovery of the circulation of the blood. At the same time he sent him a copy of the present book, which is one of the first medical treatises to contain an endorsement of Harvey’s discovery. The passage in question is found on pp. 20–24. It is discussed by Walter Pagel (William Harvey’s Biologica Ideas, New York, 1967), who reproduces the title-page of this book and two pages of the passage on Harvey. It escaped the notice of Dr. Ernst Weil when he compiled “The Echo of Harvey’s De Motu Cordis, 1628 to 1657” (J. Hist. Med., XII, April 1957). Keynes’s “The Reception of Harvey’s Doctrine during his Lifetime, 1628–1657” (based on Weil), in his Life of William Harvey (1966), pp. 271–273 and 452, and Bibliography, p. 121, lists the 1644 edition, and discusses the book, but is apparently unaware that Beverwyck’s letter appeared in this first edition. Harvey replied to Beverwyck in a long letter which included praise for the De Calculo Renum. Kiefer catalogue 59. Willems, Les Elzevier, 463.


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