Beschreibung

ÈLIE BERTRAND
(1713 – 1797)

Mémoire sur les tremblemens de terre avec quatre sermons à cette occasion: Nouvelle édition (half title: Mémoire pour servier à l‘histoire des tremblemens de terre de la Suisse, principalement pour celui de l‘année MDCCLV).

8° (160×97 mm). [4] ff., 120 pp., [1] f., 98 pp. and one blank. Title printed in black and red. Contemporary mottled roan, spine richly gilt. Rubbed, coners scuffed, spine label gone. Vevey, P. A. Chenebié, 1756.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: Quérard I, 311; cf. Haller I, 1164 (1757 edition). Not in Ward & Carozzi, Waeber and Barth.
PROVENANCE: Dan[iel] Stapfer, his name inscribed on flyleaf and dated 1782; Dr. Carlos Santos, bookplate dated 1927.
First edition, although stating „nouvelle édition“. We couldn‘t find any other edition with this date. A rare work by the Swiss pastor, geologist and naturalist, Elie Bertrand, member of numerous academies and contributor to the Encyclopédie. He was also a friend and regular correspondent of Voltaire, who composed his Poème sur le désastre de Lisbonne the same year. The book is divided into two sections: the first dealing with scientific explanations and observations past and present of seismic phenomena, whereas the second contains Bertrands sermons on the subject. Bertrand takes the earthquake of 9 December 1755 in Valais – but also considering that of Lisbon of 1 November of the same year – as the occasion for his study by attempting at a scientific explanation, reviewing similar recent geological phenomena in the country and providing a chronological list of all earthquakes observed in Switzerland since the 9th century. Although the title claims that it is a ‚new edition‘, we could not locate an earlier one. A second edition appeared at The Hague in 1757. [369029].