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Lot 0090
China. KIRCHER, Athanasius. China Monumentis.Amsterdam, Apud Iacobum a Meurs, 1667Folio 310x200 mm; contemporary full vellum binding, handwritten title on back; allegorical engraved titlepage; plate with author’s portrait; pp. 14 nn. Including titlepage, 237, 11 nn.; complete specimen with the 27 engravings o.t. which of a frontispiece, Kircher’s portrait, 2 geographic plates and 23 plates engraved on copper. Some renforced plates and dampstain but good copy.


Rare first edition in second issue, beautifully illustrated. In this work we find important documents on the government system, on geography, geology, botany, zoology and religion not only of China but also of other Asian countries. Many of the documents in this volume had never appeared before in print: as the text of the Nestor inscription of discovered in China in 781 and the description of the Roth's Hindu religion . Particularly important is the impressive iconographic apparatus that includes images of plants and animals, topography, clothes and costumes, architectures and numerous alphabets in different oriental languages. The two big plates, one from China, the other one from the total Asia, are surprisingly sophisticated and particularly accurate compared to the maps of Europe and the Far East of the time. Cordier, B, 26; Sommervogel IV, 1063; Streit V, 2335; Merrill n. 20, describes only the ediz. pirate of the Meurs of the same year; Quaritch 1996, n. 109; (The CH). Cordier, BS 26; Merrill 20 (Antwerpen 1667); de Backer-S. IV, 1064, 24; Lipperheide Le 3; Löwendahl 133.

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China. KIRCHER. China Monumentis.

Estimate €5,800 - €6,800Jun 09