Trattato di psicologia nel quale si ragiona della natura dell’anime umane, e degli altri spiriti, della loro excellenza sopra i corpi, della intelligenza, della volunta, della immortalita ...

Venice, Pietro Valvasense, 1756.

8vo, xxxi, [1], 340 (the last page with list of books printed by Valvasense); woodcut title-page vignette, initials, head- and tailpieces; a little light foxing, some very faint damp staining towards the end; a very good copy in contemporary stiff vellum, gilt lettering and inked roman numerals to spine, red edges; a few marks; circular blue ink stamp to title-page, contemporary ownership inscription of F. Philippus of Poggio Mirteto to foot of title-page and his book label to facing flyleaf.


US $611€567

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Trattato di psicologia nel quale si ragiona della natura dell’anime umane, e degli altri spiriti, della loro excellenza sopra i corpi, della intelligenza, della volunta, della immortalita ...

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First edition of the polymath Barbieri’s treatise in which he argues that the soul is an ‘active power’. Barbieri’s text tackles the interrelation of the body and soul, the nature of space, will and freedom, argues for the superiority of the spiritual over the corporeal and against the theory of innate ideas, and attempts to provide proof of the soul’s immortality. In the course of his discussion, Barbieri confronts Leibniz’s ‘monads’ and doctrine of pre-established harmony, and sets himself in opposition to Locke and, in particular, to Antonio Genovesi.

Barbieri (1719–1791), a native of Vicenza, had a long-running interest in the soul. In addition to the Trattato, he published De coniunctione animae et corporis in 1742, attributing the union and separation of soul and body to divine will, and Nuovo sistema intorno l’anima delle bestie in 1750. But his publications covered an enormous range, including works on Virgil’s Aeneid, the nature of lightning, pleasure and pain, motion, rivers, the Immaculate Conception, Stoic philosophy, natural religion, and time in relation to man and God. His theories were consistent with the fundamental principles of the Catholic religion and opposed to rationalism, sensualism, and materialism.

Rare: in the UK and US we have only traced copies at the British Library, Chicago, New York Public Library, and Yale.

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