Talking orangs...

Camper, P.

Account of the organs of speech of the orang outang. [Philosophical Transactions, 1779 Part I].

Published 1779
Item ID 65331

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London, The Royal Society, 1779. 4to (25.5 x 19.7 cm). 21 pp.; one large, double-folded engraved plate. Contemporary half calf over marbled boards. Spine with five gilt-bordered raised bands. Black morocco label with gilt title. All edges speckled red.

Important contribution to the knowledge of primate anatomy and the origin of speech. The Dutch medical doctor, anatomist, zoologist, and palaeontologist Petrus Camper (1722-1789) studied the orang-utan (literally "wood man") from the East Indies in order to prove that it was not the same animal known from Africa under that name, and to establish why the orang, so close to man, was not able to speak. Contained in Part I, of the 1779 Philosophical Transactions, together with 20 unrelated papers, including a mathematical paper by Edward Waring, a paper by John Fothergill, On a Cure of St. Vitus's Dance by Electricity, and several astronomical contributions communicated by Nevil Maskelyne. Light rubbing to the boards, small spot to the outer edge, otherwise a very good, clean copy. Nissen ZBI, 800 [for the Dutch edition].

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