Annotations and comments

Terry Foreman has posted 11054 annotations/comments since 28 June 2005.

The most recent…


About Kircher's 'China Illustrata'

Terry Foreman  •  Link

China Illustrata [can be explored page by page at "Beyond Ricci" Rare Books from the Jesuitica Collection at Boston College. The CI introduction begins: ]

Strictly speaking this work is formally known by its full Latin title:

Athanasii Kircheri e Soc. Jesu China monumentis : qua sacris quà profanis, nec non variis naturae & artis spectaculis, aliarumque rerum memorabilium argumentis illustrata auspiciis Leopoldi primi, Roman. Imper. semper Augusti, munificentissimi mecaenat. Alternatively it is also known by its shorter title China monumentis or by a variant China Illustrata.

Essentially, for the non-Latin reader, this meant that Athanasius Kircher (of the Society of Jesus) acted as a compiler, bringing together information on things both religious and secular, as well as concerning the various natural things of China (such as flora, fauna and landscape), in addition to anything else that might be of interest, such as exceptional handicrafts and so on. These items were accompanied by numerous illustrations.

As was the custom in those days, and indeed into the present, the work was dedicated to a patron, or a prospective patron, who is described in somewhat flowery language as a way of further prompting that person’s goodwill and support. A study of the works published by the Jesuits during this time would reveal the extent to which they nurtured and pan-European network of supporters and benefactors. In this instance the work was dedicated to “the August Roman Emperor Leopold I” (who reigned from 1657-1705), “a most generous (munificent) patron”.

Kircher never traveled to China but because he was based at the Jesuits’ College in Rome, where many China-based missionaries had trained and studied, he was well placed to compile the reports that they sent back to the Jesuits’ administrative offices in Rome.

The publication of this work reveals more than just those things Kircher chose to include about China (some of which was actually rather fanciful, as for instance ‘the flying cats of Kashgar’)....

About Jonson's 'Works'

Terry Foreman  •  Link

Jonson's 'Works' (3rd edition, 1692 Folio)
The 1692 single-volume third folio was printed by Thomas Hodgkin and published by a syndicate of booksellers—the title page lists H. Herringman, E. Brewster, T. Bassett, R. Chiswell, M. Wotton, and G. Converse.[6] The third folio added two works to the previous total: the play The New Inn, and Leges Convivales.

About Hooker's 'Of the lawes of ecclesiastical politie'

Terry Foreman  •  Link

The works of Mr. Richard Hooker (that learned and judicious divine), in eight books of ecclesiastical polity compleated out of his own manuscripts, never before published : with an account of his life and death ...
Hooker, Richard, 1553 or 4-1600., Gauden, John, 1605-1662., Walton, Izaak, 1593-1683., Travers, Walter, 1547 or 8-1635. Supplication made to the councel.
London: Printed by Thomas Newcomb for Andrew Crook ..., 1666.
Early English Books Online [full text]

About Guillim's 'A Display of Heraldry'

Terry Foreman  •  Link

A display of heraldry manifesting a more easie access to the knowledge thereof than hath been hitherto published by any, through the benefit of method : whereunto it is now reduced by the study and industry of John Guillim ...
Guillim, John, 1565-1621., Barkham, John, 1572?-1642., Logan, John, 17th cent.
London: Printed by S. Roycroft for R. Blome, and are sold by Francis Tyton, Henry Brome, Thomas Basset, Richard Chiswell, John Wright, and Thomas Sawbridge, 1679.
Early English Books Online [full text]

About Greville's 'Life of the renowned Sir Philip Sidney'

Terry Foreman  •  Link

The life of the renowned Sr Philip Sidney. with the true interest of England as it then stood in relation to all forrain princes: and particularly for suppressing the power of Spain stated by him. His principall actions, counsels, designes, and death. Together with a short account of the maximes and policies used by Queen Elizabeth in her government. Written by Sir Fulke Grevil Knight, Lord Brook, a servant to Queen Elizabeth, and his companion & friend.
Greville, Fulke, Baron Brooke, 1554-1628.
London: Printed for Henry Seile over against St Dunstans Church in Fleet-street, MDCLII. [1652, i.e. 1651]
Early English Books Online [full text]