Dictionnaire Encyclopédique des Mathématiques, par MM. d’Alembert, l’Abbé Bossut, de la Lande, le Marquis de Condorcet, Charles, &c. [With:] Encyclopédie Méthodique. Dictionnaire des Jeux, Faisant suite au Tome III des Mathématiques.

  • (Encyclopédie)
  • Paris: Hôtel de Thou [vol. 3 & 4 Chez Panckoucke] 1789


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5 vols bound as 4, 4to, pp. [iv], cxiv, 721, [1]; [iv], 787, [1]; [vi], xxviii, 184, iv, 316 + 16 plates; 108 plates (a number double-page). Contemporary marbled sheep, spines divided by gilt rolls, red morocco labels, compartments with central gilt decorative lozenge tools, marbled edges and endpapers. Some toning and spotting, corner of one plate with a tidy old repair. Bindings rubbed and scuffed, corners and spine ends worn, a portion lost from head of vol. 2 backstrip. Modern bookplate to front pastedowns.


A scarce reference work, the first division - covering mathematics and games - of the enormous and unwieldy Encyclopédie méthodique par ordre des matières initiated by Charles Panckoucke in an attempt to update and expand Diderot's Encyclopédie. Originally intended to cover 26 parts, it would update the original Encyclopédie while also rearranging its articles by subject instead of the random grouping of alphabetical order. Work began in 1782 and finished fifty years later (45 years later than intended) with somewhere around 150-200 volumes (depending on how the parts were gathered) having been produced. Few subscribers will have survived five decades and the French Revolution and compete sets are practically and philosophically almost unimaginable. Even the individual divisions are scarce: this Mathematics division was one of the first completed but rarely appears on the market. The small division of 'Games' was issued with the third volume of Mathematics, with its own set of plates.

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