Istoria e teoria de’ tremuoti in generale ed in particolare di quelli della Calabria, e di Messina del mdcclxxxiii…

Naples, Stamperia Reale, 1783 4° (217x146 mm). [8], ccclxxxiv, 56 pp. Woodcut head- and tailpieces, decorative initials. Three folding plates, showing the ‘casa baraccata’, drawn by Vincenzo Ferraresi, and engraved by Aniello Cataneo; one folding map of Calabria, engraved by Cataneo. Contemporary mottled calf with centrally-placed arms with motto ‘ne quid nimis’. Spine into compartments, with raised bands, gilt tooled, two leather lettering pieces, with title and volume’s number in gilt. Pastedowns and endpapers in decorated paper; azure silk bookmark. Red edges. A very fine copy. A fine copy of the first edition of the most impressive work – a second edition was proposed in 1788 (see item 79) – on the Calabrian earthquake. After the devastating event of 1783, the Bourbon gouvernement sent out a commission from the Royal Academy of Sciences and Letters in Naples in order to study the structural aspects of the local constructions and to create earthquake-resistant technique buildings.Vivenzio’s work represents one of the earliest attempts to ensure safe constructions: he proposed the building system designed as casa baraccata, a construction composed by an elastic wooden structure. “Observing the survived buildings behaviour it was detected that the structures with wooden connections proved a greater resistance. Therefore the building directives for the construction of new earthquake resistant buildings suggested the employment of an improved building system, inspired from the vernacular technique of casa baraccata (masonry buildings with a simple timber frame structure), including at the same time some principles of the 1755 standard of Lisbon gaiola system“ (L. Dipasquale et al., Local Seismic Culture, p. 258). The new building is depicting in three plates, drawn by the architect Vincenzo Ferraresi. Baratta, p. 946; BSRI, p. 348, CL065; S. Tobriner, La Casa Baraccata: Earthquake-resistant construction in 18th-century Calabria, “Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians”, 42 (1983), pp. 131-138; M. Pinault-Sørensen, Images du désastre de Messine, 1783 in A. M. Mercier Faivre-C. Thomas (eds.), L’invention de la catastrophe au xviiie siècle. Du chatîment divin au désastre natural, Genève 2008, p. 360-366; L. Dipasquale et al., Local Seismic Culture and Earthquake-Resistant Devices: Case-study of Casa Baraccata, in C. Mileto et al. (eds.), Vernacular Architecture, Towards a Sustainable Future, London 2014, pp. 225-260.
€ 2.600