11 folding leaves. 8vo, orig. wrappers, orig. block-printed title label on upper cover, new stitching. Osaka & Kyoto: 1763.
First edition and very rare (no copy in WorldCat); it was written while the author was in prison. A student of the prominent physician Toyo Yamawaki, Nagatomi (1732-66), was one of the most promising young men of his generation. A scholarly physician equally interested in both Chinese traditional medicine and Western medicine, he went to Nagasaki to study with Japanese trained by the Dutch. Based on what he learned there, he concluded that excising a cancerous tumor from the breast was a superior procedure to amputating the entire breast. This belief greatly influenced his student Seishu Hanaoka, who developed the first surgical anesthetic and performed a number of breast surgeries. During his short life, Nagatomi taught a number of other students who became prominent doctors, including Genshun Koishi and Nanmei Kamei.
While in Nagasaki, Nagatomi learned from Chinese traders how to produce sugar from sugar cane and he began to manufacture large amounts of sugar. This enterprise caught the attention of the bakufu who assumed that Nagatomi was involved in smuggling the product into Japan and, as a result, was imprisoned. This caused Nagatomi to become very disillusioned with the established Japanese government and he wrote the present book on “how to live.” Written in five chapters, Nagatomi stresses that “man” should conduct his life based on Taoist principles.
Fine copy, with no copy in WorldCat. Minor worming, touching some characters.
Item ID: 7936