(Nuremberg: In Verlegung Wolffgang Moritz Endter, und Johann Andreæ Endter, 1680). 210 x 160 mm. (8 1/4 x 6 1/4"). 9 p.l., 1450 pp.,  leaves. FIRST EDITION.
Slightly later pale green velvet, raised bands, remnants of green and gold ties. Engraved frontispiece by Cornelius Nicolas Schurtz, and 27 ENGRAVED PLATES (one folding), five of these by Schurtz, 12 by Johann Alexander Böner, and 10 unsigned. Front pastedown with small numbered (library?) label. VD17 3:302099Z. A little light dust-soiling to velvet, extremities a bit rubbed, corners slightly bumped, but the binding solid and remarkably well-preserved. Intermittent offsetting in the text bed (perhaps a dozen leaves somewhat browned as a result), occasional mild foxing, other trivial imperfections, but A FINE COPY, clean and fresh with rich impressions of the engravings on excellent handmade paper.
With dramatic illustrations that include rain showers of rats, ark-worthy floods, and large wagons of hay borne aloft by the wind, this is a huge compendium of extreme weather events and other bizarre natural phenomena by German polymath Erasmus Finx [usually latinized to Francisci]. Best remembered as a writer of Christian hymns, Finx (1627-94) worked as a reader and corrector for the Nuremberg publishing house of Endter, also penning a number of books, many under pseudonyms, for his employer on topics ranging from ghosts and goblins to religious reflections to the Indies and China. Both the New World and the Far East are mentioned in the present work: he describes Indian rain ceremonies and Chinese "weather makers" and "wind devils," the latter depicted as a man flying through the air on an enormous bird while reading a scroll. Perhaps the most mysterious event reported is what seems to be a UFO sighting: a 1665 battle between "ships" in the sky above Stralsund, Germany. At one point, a flat, round object "the color of a darkening moon" descended from above to hover over the church of St. Nicolai, terrifying the townspeople below. Many of these witnesses fell ill in the following days, "with trembling all over and pain in head and limbs." Doctors and scholars were puzzled. This is not a common work: OCLC finds six copies in US libraries; ABPC and RBH locate just two at auction since 1975. (ST15244)
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PJP Catalog: RBMS19.028