(Amstelodami: Apud Danielem Elsevirium, 1671). 165 x 98 mm. (6 1/2 x 3 7/8"). 8 p.l., 237,  pp. (without final blank). Third Edition.
Extremely pleasing contemporary speckled calf, raised bands flanked by gilt rules, spine panels with central gilt palmette. Printer's woodcut device on title page and six folding woodcut anatomical plates. Front free endpaper with ink scribble (from a recalcitrant pen?) and three lines of notes in an early hand, apparently having to do with purchase details. PMM 149; Garrison-Morton 761 (these two for the first printing); Berghman 588; Waller 6048; Wellcome III, 552; Rahir 1534; Willems 1447. Rear joint with one inch of worming at tail, tiny evidences of worming elsewhere in the leather, a little wear at top of spine, last plate with small, faint dampstain along head edge, text with vague overall browning in places, other trivial imperfections, but AN EXTREMELY FINE CONTEMPORARY COPY, the insubstantially made book still entirely solid, with little wear to the binding, and THE TEXT AND PLATES VERY FRESH AND CLEAN.
One of the most prominent English physiologists of his day, Lower (in Norman's words) "made the next great advance after Harvey in the physiology of blood circulation when he determined experimentally, with the assistance of Robert Hooke, that venous blood is changed to arterial blood in the lungs by virtue of its contact with air. The experiments leading to this discovery are reported in the third chapter of Lower's 'De Corde,' a work that also contains a number of other important observations, such as the scroll-like structure of the cardiac muscle (confirmed 250 years later by Mall), the heart's contractive and expulsive movements, the tamponade effect of pericardial effusion, and the limiting effect of pericardial adhesions on the heart." The fourth chapter here gives details of blood transfusions Lower (1631-91) made between dogs in February of 1665 and between humans in November of 1667, among the very first such operations to be performed. An edition appeared in London in 1669, and that "is usually considered to be the first." (Heirs of Hippocrates) All early editions are in Latin, and while none of them can be said to be extremely rare, it is difficult to imagine a contemporary copy in better condition than the present one. (ST12162)
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PJP Catalog: RBMS17.024