Buckley, Arabella

Through Magic Glasses

  • First edition, first impression of Arabella Buckley’s sequel to her popular children’s book The Fairy-Land of Science. An attractive copy with the gilt design on the upper board still fresh and bright.

    Author Arabella Buckley (1840-1929) was an authoritative popularizer of science and was for several years secretary to the zoologist Sir Charles Lyell. She was “personally familiar with the leading scientists and scientific theories of her day, lectured on natural science from 1876 until 1888, was editor of Mary Somerville's Connexion of the Physical Sciences (1877) and Heinrich Leutemann's Animals from Life (1887), and produced a set of botanical tables for the use of junior students (1876)... Buckley was deeply aware of the nature of science writing and realized that science, though based in fact or experiment, was transmitted as a literary construction" (ODNB).

    "Two other books, The Fairy-Land of Science and its sequel, Through Magic Glasses (1890), demonstrate her skill at telling the stories of science. In Fairy-Land Buckley generated interest in her scientific subjects by borrowing the language of fairy stories and wizardry to reinforce her ultimate belief that the wonders of science not only paralleled but surpassed the wonders of fairyland. In its sequel, Through Magic Glasses, she focused more closely on what childlike eyes can see, calling on the help of the telescope, stereoscope, photographic camera, and microscope, and a fictional guide, a magician into whose chamber the reader immediately enters and through whose eyes the world is viewed.” (ODNB).

  • ...and other Lectures. A Sequel to The Fairy Land of Science. With Numerous Illustrations. London: Edward Stanford, 1890. Octavo. Original brown cloth, titles and illustrations to spine and upper board blocked in gilt and black, smaller illustration to lower board in blind, yellow endpapers, all edges gilt. Frontispiece and 3 plates of which 2 are in colour, engravings throughout the text. Cloth lightly rubbed, spine a little dulled, some small bumps to the edges of the boards, joints starting, text block a little shaken, light spotting to frontispiece and title. A very good copy.

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