Dei Terremoti di Messina, e di Calabria dell’anno mcclxxxiii. Memorie, e Riflessioni…

Bologna, Stamperia San Tommaso d’Aquino, 1783].

8° (203x137 mm). 55, [9] pp. Woodcut vignettes on title, and on l. E3r (printer’s devices?). Original decorated wrappers, slightly rubbing and staining on both covers. A very good copy, waterstain to upper margin of the first quires, somewhat spotting. Staining to front pastedown and endpaper. Provenance: ‘De La Fond’ (ownership inscriptions on recto of front and rear endpapers). On verso of rear endpaper the annotation ‘1785 Comprato in Napoli’. Another inked annotation, rather unreadble, on front pastedown ‘le 31 juillet la <?>”. Together with the Lisbon earthquake of 1755, the 1783 Calabrian disaster belongs to the most catastrophic European seismic event of the 18th century, and gave rise to a large series of narrative accounts and scientific texts, assessing the nature, causes, effects and damages of the disaster. To this discussion give a contribution the above-mentioned Olevetan Augusti (see item 52). The volume opens with the text of a letter sent to him by Andrea Gallo, professor at the Collegio Carolino, Messina (Lettera Istorico-Fisica De’ terremoti accaduti in Messina nel Mese di Febbrajo di quest’anno 1783), whereas the last leaves contain a brief report of the phenomena observed by Angelo Masci.

Baratta, p. 850; BSRI, p. 382, SI056; A. Placanica, Il filosofo e la catastrofe. Un terremoto del Settecento, Torino 1985; M.R. Pellizzari, Enlightenment Intellectuals and Popular Mentality after the 1783 Calabrian Earthquake, “Studies on Voltaire and the Eighteenth Century”, 303, 1991, pp. 523-527; 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.
€ 1.250