HALES, STEPHEN. 'VEGETABLE STATICKS: OR, AN ACCOUNT OF SOME STATICAL EXPERIMENTS ON THE SAP IN VEGETABLES: BEING AN ESSAY TOWARDS A NATURAL HISTORY OF VEGETATION. ALSO, A SPECIMEN OF AN ATTEMPT TO ANALYSE THE AIR, BY A GREAT VARIETY OF CHYMIO-STATICAL EXPERIMENTS; WHICH WERE READ AT SEVERAL MEETINGS BEFORE THE ROYAL SOCIETY'. LONDON, W. & J. INNYS AND T. WOODWARD, 1727
6,000 - 8,000 USD
- 'Vegetable Staticks: Or, An Account of some Statical Experiments on the sap in vegetables: Being an Essay towards a Natural History of Vegetation. Also, a specimen of An Attempt to Analyse the Air, By a great Variety of Chymio-Statical Experiments; Which were read at several Meetings before the Royal Society'. London, W. & J. Innys and T. Woodward, 1727
- Paper, ink, leather
8vo (7 5/8 x 4 7/8 in.; 195 x 125 mm). 19 engraved plates by Simon Gribelin; Gilmanton Theological Library label to dedication leaf, minor soiling and foxing. Contemporary brown calf; overall worn, upper cover perished. Half brown morocco over cloth covered board clamshell case.
Joseph Seccombe (signature to title-page). Seccombe is best remembered as the author of the first American work on fishing.
Dibner, 26; Horblit 45a; Norman 970; PMM 189a; Waller 11526; Wellcome III:194
First edition. Joseph Seccombe's copy. The "first complete account of the physiology of plants, including the reaction with air and movement of the sap" (Horblit). Hales measured the amount of water lost by plants through evaporation and related this to the amount of water present in a given area of soil in which plants were growing. He was the first to realize that plants absorb carbon dioxide from the air, and that it forms a vital part of their food supply.