CLAVIUS (Christophorus) In Sphaeram Ioannis de Sacro Bosco commentaries [Commentaire du livre de la sphère de Jean de Sacrobosco]. Nunc iterum ab ipso auctore recognitus, & multi sac variis locis locupletatus.
Rome, Ex Officina Dominici Basae [Domenicus Basa], (at the end: Apud Francescum Zanettum), 1581.
Small 4to, contemporary brown calf, fillets around sides, (unidentified) gilt arms in center (the arms are not the same on both sides), spine with 5 raised bands, gilt fleuron in compartments, old paper lettering piece. (32) pp., 467 pp. Woodcut printer’s mark on verso of last leaf. Woodcut sphere on the title-page, capital letters, diagrams in the text. Complete.
Third Edition, “expanded in many places”.
Clavius’s commentary on Sacrobosco’s De Sphaera, first published in 1570, became a standard university text, one which Galileo would have studied in his youth. Clavius was an adherent of the Ptolemaic system; he was apparently the first to accuse Copernicus not only of having presented a physically absurd doctrine but also of having contradicted numerous scriptural passages (DSB, III, 311). Nonetheless, Clavius maintained friendly relations with Galileo, and was among the Roman astronomers who wrote to Cardinal Bellarmine in 1611 confirming the discoveries Galileo had reported in the Siderius nuncius (Christies).
Binding slightly worn and light marginal dampstaining at the end of the volume, generally a good crisp unsophisticated copy.
Ref. Adams, C-2100 / De Caro, 67 / Houzeau-Lancaster, 2678.