Stone, Edmund | A New Mathematical Dictionary

  • First edition of this rare mathematical dictionary, used as a source by Samuel Johnson in compiling his Dictionary of the English Language. Only one other copy of the first edition appears in at auction records from the past two decades: the Macclesfield copy at Sotheby’s in 2005. This copy from the library of engineer and book collector Erwin Tomash, with his bookplate.

    Author Edmund Stone (1695?-1768) was a self-taught mathematician, the son of the gardener to John Campbell, Second Duke of Argyll, who sponsored his academic work. Stone’s primary contributions were in translating mathematical works, including “a treatise on mathematical instruments by Nicolas Bion, one on perspective by 'sGravesande, one on the theory and working of ships by Henri Pitot, and the two great treatises by L'Hospital, one on conic sections, the other his Analyse des infiniment petits (Paris, 1696) which was the standard textbook on Leibniz's differential calculus” (ODNB). Stone's editorial work included “a revised translation in 1726 from David Gregory's original, Elements of Physical and Geometrical Astronomy (1702), and a translation from Latin of Isaac Barrow's Lectiones geometricae (1674) of 1735. His New Mathematical Dictionary (1726) was a shorter and less expensive alternative to John Harris's Lexicon technicum (1704–10) and updated a similar work by Joseph Raphson published in 1702” (ODNB).

  • ...Wherein is Contain’d, not only the Explanation of the Bare Terms, but likewise an History, of the Rise, Progress, State, Properties, &c. of Things, both in Pure Mathematics and Natural Philosophy, so far as it comes under a Mathematical Consideration. London: J. Senex, W. and J. Innys, J. Osborn, T. Longman, and T. Woodward, 1726.

    Octavo. Contemporary panelled calf with decorative roll and elaborate cornerpieces, red morocco label, red speckled edges. Engraved headpiece and decorative initial. Diagrams within the text. Errata leaf followed by 4 page publisher’s ads at rear. Contemporary ownership signature of James Rigg to the front free endpaper. Bookplates of James Rigg of Downfield and Nether Tarvit, the Turner Collection at the University of Keele, and Erwin Tomash. Boards rubbed and scuffed, some loss from the head of the spine. Contents fresh.