This edition unknown to Ferguson

Digby, Kenelm. Eröffnung unterschiedlicher Heimlichkeiten der Natur [...], vornemlich von einem wunderbaren Geheimnüß in Heilungen der Wunden, ohne Berührung, [...] durch die Sympathiam, discurßweise gehalten in einer hochansehnlichen Versamlung zu Montpelier [...] Zum zweytenmal gedruckt [...].

Frankfurt/Main, Balthasar Christoph Wust, 1661.

8vo. (6), 131, (5) pp. Modern marbled boards.


Rare second German edition, unknown to Ferguson. The well-known treatise, reprinted far into the 18th century, describes the invention and application of the author's miracle "sympathetic powder" (ferrum sulfuricum siccum).

Sir Kenelm Digby was a man of many parts, including those of a courtier (he was a friend of Charles I and was known to Cromwell), poet, pirate, alchemist, book collector, and inventor. He travelled extensively, fighting Venetian galleys off Iskenderun and living successively in France and Italy. After the death of his wife he was drawn toward science and performed numerous chemical experiments. "In 1657 his increasingly poor health led Digby to take the waters at Montpellier, where he gave his famous account of the 'powder of sympathy', which cured wounds by being rubbed on the weapon that inflicted them. It was a strong solution of vitriol (copper sulfate) in rainwater, which could be improved by drying in the sun and by mixture with gum tragacanth" (DSB IV, 95). "The discourse on the powder of sympathy, one of the most famous of Digby's productions" (Ferguson VI, 22), first appeared in 1658 in Paris in French and then in London in English, before being translated into German by H. Hupka in 1660.

Browned throughout due to paper stock. Wants the engraved frontispiece (present in facsimile). Old handwritten ownership to verso of title-page.

VD 17, 3:625237G. BL (German books) D 459. Ferchl 125. Cf. Krivatsy 3250 (3rd ed., also without the frontispiece). Ferguson (Books of Secrets) VI, 23 ("of the second edition, I do not know the date"). DSB IV, 96.

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