"AN EXHAUSTIVE STUDY OF THE PARASITES OF MAN": ANDRY'S BREEDING OF WORMS IN HUMAN BODIES, 1701 FIRST EDITION IN ENGLISH, ILLUSTRATED
ANDRY, Nicholas. An Account of the Breeding of Worms in Human Bodies; Their Nature and Several Sorts; Their Effects, Symptoms and Prognostics. With the True Means to Avoid Them, and Medicines to Cure Them. London: H. Rhodes, 1701. Octavo, modern full burgundy morocco, raised bands. $2200.
First edition in English of the first medical parasitology text, published just one year after the French first edition, with four copper-engraved plates on two leaves and large folding plate. Also notably includes a 23-page appendix on tobacco use asserting that "the frequent use of tobacco shortens the life," making Andry one of the first physicians to oppose the use of tobacco.
"The first medical parasitology text—an exhaustive study of the parasites of man, the diseases associated with them and their treatment. Andry's views were often ahead of his time. Unlike most of his contemporaries, he did not believe in the spontaneous generation of parasites but clearly stated that their seeds entered the body from outside sources and that some foods were particularly liable to contain them" (Garrison & Morton 2448.2). "An extremely influential book… Within a generation, Andry's book, which found a receptive audience in England, was to become a source for the contagionist work of Benjamin Marten" (De Lacy, The Germ of an Idea). First published as De la generation des vers dans le corps de l'homme in 1700. Garrison & Morton 2448.2. ESTC T88348. Bookplate of Birmingham Medical Institute, noting that this volume was presented by Dr. Thomas Blackall; Institute's ink stamp to title page and plates. Founded as a Library in 1875, the Birmingham Medical Institute held 5000 rare and important medical works donated by notable physicians. Dr. Thomas Blackall (1814-89) presented a number of rare volumes to the Institute.
Short closed tear to large folding plate near stub, title page and last leaf with marginal paper repairs at hinge; text and plates generally clean. Front joint tender but sound. An attractive copy.