SCHEELE, Carl Wilhelm.

Traité Chimque de l’Air et du Feu… Avec une introduction de Torbern Bergman… Ouvrage traduit de l’Allemand, par le Baron de Dieterich… A Paris, Rue et Hôtel Serpente. 1781. [And:] Supplement au Traité Chimique de l’Air et du Feu de M. Scheele, contenant un tableau abrégé des nouvelles découvertes sur les diverses espèces d’air, par Jean-Godefroi Léonhardy; des notes de M. Richard Kirwan, & une lettre du Docteur Priestley à ce chimiste anglois, sur l’ouvrage de M. Scheele; traduit et augmenté de notes…par M. le Baron de Dietrich…

A Paris: Rue et Hotel Serpente. .1785

2 volumes, 12mo, pp. xliv, (45)–268, 1 folding engraved plate; pp. xiv, (ii), (13)–214, (2) blank. Contemporary mottled calf, flat spines gilt, brown morocco labels, red edges, marbled endpapers (probably by different binders, and not quite uniform). Head of spine of Supplement worn, and foot chipped, one corner a little worn, some light foxing or browning, but a very good set. Bookplates of J. Laissus.

FIRST EDITION IN FRENCH of Scheele’s famous treatise describing his independent discovery of oxygen. The translator was Baron P.F. de Dieterich (1748–1793), a distinguished scientist who became mayor of Strasburg at the outset of the French Revolution and was later executed. His notes are added at the end of the volume. Lavoisier submitted a favourable report to the Académie des Sciences on this translation (see Duveen & Klickstein 61) and, with Berthollet, applied for the printing privilege. Partington calls the book “very rare”, and it is even rarer with the supplement, published four years later, in which are incorporated the additions to the second German edition of 1782, viz. Leonhardi’s survey of the new discoveries on gases (with additions and notes by the translator), remarks by Kirwan, a letter by Priestley, Scheele’s treatise on the amount of “air pur” (oxygen) in the atmosphere, and indexes. Cole 1165 and 1166. Duveen p. 533 (without the Supplement). Neville II, p. 431. Partington III, p. 211, no. VII A and B. See Dibner 41 and Horblit 92 for the first edition.


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