[Utopian Literature] Nicolai Klimii Iter Subterraneum Novam Telluris Theoriam Ac Historiam Quintae Monarchiae Adhuc Nobis Incognitae Exhibens e Bibliotheca B. Abelini
Hafinae & Lipsiae [Copenhagen and Leipzig]: Printed By Pelt, Friedrich Christian, 1766. Early Reprint. Full Leather. Fourth Edition, in Latin, of one of the most popular eighteenth-century utopian novels (second only to Gulliver's Travels), eventually reaching some 60 editions in 13 different languages. Small 8vo: ,360pp, with portrait frontispiece, engraved title-page, folding map and six full-page plates engraved by Brühl (the 1741 first edition, published in Copenhagen, contained only 3 three plates in addition to the frontispiece; the first English edition, none). Contemporary dark brown mottled sheep, elaborately gilded spine sewn on five bands, green and tan lettering pieces gilt, red paste-paper end papers, marbled edges. Spine rubbed with some loss of gilt, else an extremely pleasing and collectible copy of this satirical romance in the style of Gulliver's Travels (although Bleiler notes that "Holberg's satire is wider in scope, more penetrating in analysis, and less local than Swift's") by the father of Danish literature ("Holberg found Denmark with no books, and he wrote a library for her."—Encyclopedia Britannica). Internally fine and bright with excellent plate impressions. Hoover 425. Bleiler, Science-Fiction: The Early Years 1114 (of "international importance"). Gove, pp. 303-305; Stammhammer II, p. 171. Brunet III, 260. Near Fine+. Item #BB0214
Originally published in 1741, this highly imaginative Swiftian journey to a fifth underground continent is set in the Norwegian town of Bergen, where a penniless student visits a strange cave, falls into a void, and ends up on the subterranean planet Nazar, which is inhabited by sentient monkeys, thinking trees, goat philosophers, and double basses that communicate musically. According to Lewis (Utopian Literature, p. 92), Niels Klim is the first important fictional use of the astronomer Edmond Haley's theory (suggested in a paper published by the Royal Society in 1692) that three concentric hollow balls nested inside the earth account for the magnetism of the poles through their movement, and that openings at the poles provide access to hidden worlds through a series of caves. Nor was Haley alone: from the 1600s to the early 1900s, the notion of a hollow earth was treated seriously by leading scientists, including Johannes Kepler and Athanasius Kircher. N. B. With few exceptions (always identified), we only stock books in exceptional condition. All orders are packaged with care and posted promptly. Satisfaction guaranteed. (Fine Editions Ltd is a member of the Independent Online Booksellers Association, and we subscribe to its codes of ethics.).