Science and its Development from B & L Rootenberg Rare Books
Chambers and a few others may have concluded that species must somehow be evolving from one another, but it took Charles Darwin to explain exactly how, and provide the world with the evidence. The result is that his book is the one now recognized as one of the most important biological texts ever written. Item 32 is a copy of the first edition of On the Origin of Species by means of Natural Selection, published in 1859. $95,000.
Of course there is the other side, and for those who believe in literal biblical creationism, there is no greater authority than Archbishop Ussher (though it must be noted that Ussher lived a couple of centuries before anyone had conceived of the theory of evolution). Ussher was the man who looked at biblical events and times to conclude the exact time of creation. The date was October 23, 4004 BC. Adam and Eve would have appeared just in time to celebrate - of all holidays - Halloween. Ussher derived his date by starting with the death of Nebuchadnezzar, which time was known, and working back through the Bible. Item 117 is Ussher's Annales veteris testamenti (1650) bound with Annales in quibus… (1654). $6,500.
For those who think mankind is at the top of the evolutionary chain, there is John Bulwer's Anthropometamorphosis: man transform'd… This is a book of all the hideous means of decorating and transforming the human body. Today, this stuff would again be in style. It covers tattooing, scarring, lip and ear piercing, and binding, along with displaying deformities, maladies, monstrosities and the like. This is the 1653 edition, which is the "best" compared to the 1650 as the first edition was not illustrated. It's the illustrations that make this book. Bulwer conducted anthropological studies of different peoples, but a look at these illustrations implies some of them lived only in his imagination. Item 19. $10,500.
B & L Rootenberg Rare Books may be reached at 818-788-7765 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Their wesbite is www.rootenbergbooks.com.