Cosmographie Élementaire, Divisée en Parties Astronomique et Géographique
Mentelle, , [Edme Jany].

Paris: Chez L'Auteur, 1781. First edition of this introductory work of geography and astronomy for young people. Illustrated with nine engraved folding plates, seven of which are maps of Africa, the United States, France, Europe, Asia, South America, and the world. Binding extremities very slightly rubbed, two minor wormholes near spine on front cover and one on lower rear board. Minor light stains to lower margins of pp. 207-210, 295-298 touching a few letters, but not affecting legibility, and lower margins of 303-304. Small closed 1” tear to outer margin of pp. 211-212. Small hole to pp. 295-296 with loss of two letters. A very good copy. Contemporary mottled calf, gilt spine in six compartments with gilt-lettered brown morocco label. Edges stained red, marbled endpapers. Octavo. xxiv, 429, [3] pp. (Item ID: 16519)


Edme Mentelle (1730-1815) was a geographer and writer, whose works included poems and comedic plays. He later studied geography, which he eventually taught at the École Militaire in the 1760s. Mentelle also taught geography to the royal household and, in 1786, he designed a globe, which is still on display in the Dauphin’s apartments at the Palace of Versailles. In the preface to Cosmographie, Mentelle states that his work is meant to serve as a description of the universe. It is divided into two parts, Astronomy (pp. 9-244) and Geography (pp.245-427). For a more in-depth study of the subjects, he also refers readers to his seven-volume work for adults Géographie compare (1778-1784).

Cioranescu 44344.

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