One folding engraved map. Five vols. 8vo, cont. black specked boards (a bit of wear), spines gilt, red & blue leather lettering pieces on spines. Gotha: J. Perthes, 1822-24-34-40-41.
First edition and very scarce when complete. Hoff (1771-1837), was an important diplomat, representing the duchy of Gotha. He “simultaneously accomplished first-rate work in a totally different field — scientific research, notably in geology and geography. Indeed, he introduced a new epoch of geological study which continues still…[In the present work] Hoff insisted that one must in the first instance study the effect of those forces whose work we are able to observe today and apply this knowledge to the earliest history of the earth. Through these premises, later designated Aktualismus, he consciously rejected the catastrophist theory. He did not make headway at first. Not until Lyell’s Principles of Geology attained wide dissemination as a comprehensive textbook, supported by observations throughout the world did actualism gain ascendancy and find lasting application in countless investigations.”–D.S.B., VI, p. 457–(& see pp. 456-57 for a full account of Hoff’s achievements).
Fine set. The final two volumes, published after Hoff’s death, were edited by Heinrich Karl Wilhelm Berghaus.
❧ Zittel, pp. 187-88–“His great work treats of the relation between land and sea in historic time, the extension of the ocean surface owing to the erosion of the coastal territories and invasions of the continents. The volume betokens complete mastery of all the literature on the subject, from the authors of antiquity to the nineteenth century.”.
Item ID: 4826