ITARD, Jean-Marie-Gaspard.

Traité des Maladies de l’Oreille et de l’Audition.

A Paris: chez Méquignon-Marvis…1821

2 volumes, 8vo, 2 leaves, pp. xvi, 396; 2 leaves, 522 pages, and 3 folding engraved plates. Half-titles. Foxing on the plates. Contemporary blue quarter roan and marbled sides (tops of joints rubbed). Some ink marks by an early owner, mostly short lines in the margin; bookplate of Richard J. Bennett.

FIRST EDITION of the first modern textbook on the diseases of the ear, an important work based on 172 case histories, which did much to establish otology on a sound basis. “What endows this book with special value is a rare honesty that deals openly with the shortcomings of the applied therapeutic methods. It was due primarily to Itard that the traditional methods were finally abandoned” (Politzer, p. 278, from a long account of this book). The text is preceded by a history of the anatomy of the ear, and in volume 2 is a long section on deafness and deaf-mutism, with which Itard was deeply involved. He devised tests for hearing, devised the psycho-acoustical phenomenon of ‘sound masking’, and developed an acumeter. G&M 3364. Politzer, History of otology, pp. 278–282. Stevenson & Guthrie p. 59. Robert J. Ruben, Hear! Hear! Six centuries of otology (2002), 55.


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