Paris: Montalant, 1722. SECOND EDITION IN FRENCH. Finely printed with decorative woodcut headpiece, initials, and engraved chapter vignettes depicting author’s optical experiments (white on black background -- see sketch of vignette in Guerlac, pp. 158 and on dust jacket of his book). With 12 folding engraved plates. Full vellum; faint water stains on the blank fore-edge of a few leaves. Bookplate of Arnold Thackray as well as a very interesting contemporary wax armorial stamp used as a bookplate. An especially nice, crisp copy, important for its illustrations and typographical execution. Item #14990
This second French edition is greatly superior to the first Amsterdam edition of 1720 (which was published in 12mo.) not only textually but for its beauty. According to Guerlac, it is the handsomest edition of the Opticks printed in Newton’s lifetime, or indeed later. This edition, quite rare, was edited by Pierre Varignon, and included changes proposed by de Moivre and authorized by Newton.