A Discourse Concerning a New World & Another Planet. In 2 Bookes

A Discourse Concerning a New World & Another Planet. In 2 Bookes

John Wilkins

London, Printed by John Norton for John Maynard, 1640.

2 volumes bound as one. [12], 242, [2], [12], 246, [4] pp., p221/22 present the cancel leaf with engraving and cancellandum, errata leaves. Lacking engraved title. Octavo. Early 18th century sheep, gilt, raised bands. A few chips, rejointed and rehinged. Flourish signature of Mark Westron, 1726, faint damsptain to a few page margins, contemporary marginalia.   3rd impression. corr. and en.

The First Book. The Discovery of a New World. or A Discourse tending to prove, that 'tis probable that there may be another habitable World in the Moone. With a Discourse concerning the possibility of a Passage thither with A Discourse concerning a New Planet. Tending to prove, That 'tis probable our Earth is one of the Planets, third impression. The second Booke, first edition.

First Complete Edition. "One of the Earliest significant works of popular science" (Norman) "Wilkins's primary aim was to promote general knowledge and acceptance of the "new" science of Copernicus, Galileo and Kepler and to wean his readers from an unquestioning dependence upon Aristotelian doctrine and literal biblical interpretation. In the first edition of the Discovery Wilkins had used Galileo's statement that the moon is a world similar to the earth as a foundation for more speculative hypotheses, wondering if the moon might not support life, what it inhabitants might be like, and whether the moon's resemblance to the earth could be extended into a uniformitarian theory of the universe. In [this] edition Wilkins added a section, inspired by Francis Godwin's Man in the Moone (1638), on the then-sensational idea of voyaging to the moon, discussing the problems connected with this endeavor - such as gravity and the nature and height of the atmosphere - in terms of contemporary physical knowledge" (Norman) 

STC 25641; RSTC S119973. Norman 2240.

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