MARTIN, Benjamin.

Philosophia Britannica: or, a new and comprehensive system of the Newtonian philosophy, astronomy, and geography, in a course of twelve lectures, with notes; containing the physical, mechanical, geometrical, and experimental proofs and illustrations of all the principal propositions in every branch of natural science: also, a particular account of…instruments, engines, and machines… The fourth edition.

London: Printed for John, Francis, Charles Rivington; and Thomas Carnan…and Andrew Strahan…1788

3 volumes, 8vo, pp. (xxxii), 333, (3) advertisements, 20 engraved plates (18 folding) numbered I–XVII and Appendix I–III; pp. (xvi), 390, (2) advertisements, 25 folding plates numbered 18–XLII; pp. (xii), 405, (39) index, 36 folding plates numbered XLIII–LXXII and Appendix II I–V + 1 plate “belonging to Plate 62” (a total of 81 plates). Contemporary speckled sheep, spines ruled in gilt and unlettered except for volume numbers. Cracks in several joints, small chip at top of one spine, tips of several corners a little worn, but a nice, clean set. Signature of J. Willis on title of volume 1, and of Francis Willis on p. 1.

Fourth and last edition, expanded from the rare first edition of 1747 published at Reading, which was itself a greatly expanded version of his Course of Lectures in Natural and Experimental Philosophy (1743), written when he was trying to earn a living by giving lectures and demonstrations on Newtonian experimental philosophy similar to those given in London for many years by J. T. Desaguliers. Martin was one of the best known of the many popularisers of science of his day, and one of the first true retailers in the scientific instruments trade, holding an astonishingly large and varied stock. Wallis 115.3.


In stock

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