G[othofredi]. G[uillelmi]. L[eibnitii]. Relatio ad inclytam Societatem Leopoldinam Naturae Curiosorum, de novo antidysenterico Americano magnis successibus comprobato. Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz.
First Edition of Leibniz’s Pharmacological Work

G[othofredi]. G[uillelmi]. L[eibnitii]. Relatio ad inclytam Societatem Leopoldinam Naturae Curiosorum, de novo antidysenterico Americano magnis successibus comprobato.

Hannov. et Gurlpherpit (Hannover, Wolfenbütte: Gothofredi Freytagii (Gottfried Freytag), 1696. First edition. Papered spine. Printer’s device on last page. 8º; (a)1–(b)8, (c)1–3 .; 37, (1) p. In fine condition.

Scarce pharmacological work on the ipecacuanha root, that can be used as an emetic, nauseant, expectorant and diaphoretic.

“Relatio ad inclytam Societatem Leopoldinam Naturae Curiosorum, de novo antidysenterico Americano magnis successibus comprobato” (Relation to the Illustrious Leopoldine Society of Naturalists Concerning the New American Anti-Dysentery Drug, Attested with Great Success) is Leibniz’s most comprehensive and influential contribution to the history of medicine and pharmacy.

Leibniz wrote the treatise after he read the study on ipecacuanha root written by Willem Piso and Georg Marggraf (published in Historia naturalis Brasilia [1648]) and evidently after conducted experiences with the root himself. The root was made famous after it was used successfully to treat the King of France, Louis XIV’s dysentery in 1672 by the Dutch physician John Frederick Helvetius (1625–1719).

The work has been published in the same year as an appendix to Martin Lister’s “Sex exercitationes medicales de quibusdam morbis chronicis” (Frankfurt and Leipzig, 1696) and also to “Miscellanea curiosa, sive Ephemeridum medico-physicarum Germanicarum” (Nuremberg, 1696). Lister’s work was printed by Freytag too, the difference is merely the lack of the colophon on the “Lister-edition”.

[Ref.: Smith, J. E. H.: Divine Machines. Leibniz and the Sciences of Life. Princeton University Press, 2011.; Dutens II. 2. pp. 110–119.; Ravier 36.]

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Price: €3,000.00