Skip to main content

Fine Editions Ltd

Fine Editions Ltd
Item #BB2742 [Maritime] The Elements and Practice of Rigging and Seamanship. Illustrated with engravings. In two volumes. David STEEL.
[Maritime] The Elements and Practice of Rigging and Seamanship. Illustrated with engravings. In two volumes.
[Maritime] The Elements and Practice of Rigging and Seamanship. Illustrated with engravings. In two volumes.
[Maritime] The Elements and Practice of Rigging and Seamanship. Illustrated with engravings. In two volumes.
[Maritime] The Elements and Practice of Rigging and Seamanship. Illustrated with engravings. In two volumes.
[Maritime] The Elements and Practice of Rigging and Seamanship. Illustrated with engravings. In two volumes.
[Maritime] The Elements and Practice of Rigging and Seamanship. Illustrated with engravings. In two volumes.

[Maritime] The Elements and Practice of Rigging and Seamanship. Illustrated with engravings. In two volumes.

London: Printed For David Steel, Union-Road, Little Tower Hill, M.DCC.XCIV [1794]. Full Calf. Rare First Edition of Steel's exhaustive treatise on shipbuilding (complete in two continuously paginated volumes bound as one), a massive work addressing all things maritime in the age of sail. Demy 4to (262 x 204mm): xv,[3],185,185*,186-240; [4],245*-260*,244-425,[5],147,[1]pp, with 95 inserted copper-engraved plates (some folding and double-page), depicting shipbuilding, masts, ropes, sails, and the like; two volvelles (one defective), and numerous full-page tables. (Pagination is continuous but highly irregular, per ESTC.) Contemporary full tree calf covers with old reback, flat spine gilt in six compartments, red leather lettering piece gilt, marbled end papers, separate title pages. Book plate of conservationist Frederick E. Ellis (1916-2010), of Shaw Island, Washington. A superb example in period binding, tightly bound and clean throughout, with excellent impressions of the plates; compass volvelle absent movable pointers. Bibliotheca Nautica 1339 ("One of the outstanding works on the subject"). Adams & Waters 3275. RCIN 1059213. Fine. Item #BB2742

According to the Preface, "The germe of this work was a small and incomplete treatise on sail making, which some years ago came into the possession of the publisher. In the course of rendering that fit for general use, the reciprocal dependence of the naval arts was discerned; and it was instantly resolved to collect them all together, . . . " By the late eighteenth century, Britain was the pre-eminent naval power, but faced challenges from French militarisation following the Revolution of 1789, "forcing the Royal Navy to construct hundreds of new ships over a short period. The Elements & Practice of Rigging & Seamanship provides extensive instructions on how to prepare a ship for sail and the basics of seamanship and naval tactics. It is heavily illustrated with engraved plates and moveable diagrams and covers everything from mast- and sail-making to rigging and rope-making. There are also illustrated comparisons between various British ships to other European ships as well as to Chinese and Polynesian sailing vessels." (Royal Collection Trust) 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.).

Price: $3,649.00

See all items in HAND-PRESS PERIOD, XIX CENTURY
See all items by