Catalog Archive
Auction 142, Lot 762

"The Physical Atlas of Natural Phenomena", Johnston, Alexander K.

Subject: Atlases, Geology

Period: 1856 (dated)


Color: Printed Color

15 x 22 inches
38.1 x 55.9 cm
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This is a magnificent example of the enlarged second edition of the Physical Atlas of Natural Phenomena (the first edition was produced in 1848). This is the English version of Heinrich Berghaus' Physikalischer Atlas, the first truly comprehensive thematic atlas. It is a very early example of printed color, the development of which made a huge impact on cartography in general and specifically on the graphic portrayal of geographical data on thematic maps. Complete with 137 pp. of text, 35 double-page plates and 7 text plates. The atlas is packed with information on a host of topics including geology, hydrography, meteorology, botany, natural history and ethnology. The 35 double-page plates include 11 on geology, 6 on hydrology, 6 on meteorology, 2 botanical plates, 6 on zoology and 4 on ethnology. Among the noteworthy maps are "Geological and paleontological map of the British Islands" by Edward Forbes, a "Geological map of the United States and British North America" by H.D. Rogers and a "Geological map of Europe" by R.I. Murchison and James Nicol. Rebound in quarter calf with original tips and pebbled cloth covers with gilt lettering on front cover. All edges gilt (A.E.G.).

***Extra shipping charges will apply outside of the United States due to its size and weight***


Condition: A

Condition code is for the maps, which along with the text are near fine with just a hint of toning and occasional offsetting. The rebound spine appears to have a portion of the original spine glued on top. Covers are worn and the edges are bumped with minor damp stains along the fore-edge of the endpapers and an owner's pastedown on the inside front cover.

Estimate: $2,000 - $2,400

Sold for: $1,600

Closed on 11/28/2012