Bulwer, John (only J.B. on titlepage but Bulwer signs the Dedication)
CHIROLOGIA: OR THE NATURALL LANGUAGE OF THE HAND. Composed of the Speaking Motions, and Discoursing Gestures thereof. Whereunto is added CHIRONOMIA: Or, the Art of Manuall Rhetoricke. Consisting of the Naturall Expressions, digested by Art in the Hand, as the chiefest Instrument of Eloquence, by Historicall Manifesto's, Exemplified Out of the Authentique Registers of Common Life, and Civill Conversation. With Types, or Chyrograms: A long-wish'd for illustration of this Argument. By J.B. Gent. Philochirosophus.
Tho. Harper sold by R. Whitaker
Copperplates (3 folding plates + 3 fullpage plates) lacking the 2 engraved titles (provided in facsimile on matched paper) and with several nice headpieces, initials and printer's ornaments.
Two parts in one volume small octavo handsome half speckled leather on 5 raised bands with red gilt titled spine label and marbled boards. Titlepage +pp prelims +287pp +pp index +plate +errata +blanks; Titlepage to Chironomia + pp prelims +146pp +pp errata & blank. First titlepage cropped at foot affecting the date which has been written in above; 2nd titlepage better centered and complete with all publisher's details and date 1644. Ownership E.W. Sergeant to blank area of first title, the folding plates are remargined to outer edge, paper slightly browned & some pages faintly dampmarked, but supple and strong without any tears or writing. Printed side notes and pointing hands are all complete with a margin. Both first editions published by Harper but sold by different booksellers thus there is probably no precedence. *The author was a medical doctor and writer. This is the first book specifically dealing with sign language and with gesture illustrations. Bulwer was intereted in schooling for the deaf and suggests that manual alphabets could be "ordered to serve for privy ciphers for any secret intimation" (Chironomia, p149). Chirologia shows examples of manual gestures, their meanings and their uses drawing on a wide range of sources from literature, religion and Medicine. Chironomia, which the author considered as a separate work, was the result (Wing B5462A & B5467 ESTC r14061, Garrison & Morton 3346-7).
Price: GBP 1200.00 or USD 1572.00
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