Londini: Joh Martyn, 1678. First Edition. Small 4to, [viii], 250, . The second treatise has a separate title-page. Illustrated with 9 folding engravings. Bound in contemporary full calf, spine gilt (worn at the extremities of the spine, and along the hinge, bookplate removed from end paper, small library stamp on title-page. Some age toning to the sides of the title-page. A very good tight clean copy. Nissen ZBI, 2527; BMNH 3:1155; Wing L2523. Item #40634
The English physician Martin Lister (1638-1712) was the Royal Physician of Queen Anne. This present work was the first monograph dedicated to the mollusks. Lister describes essentially three classes of animals, i. e. spiders, terrestrial and fluvial shells and marine shells. The first section he writes of the many mistakes of previous authors writing on Arachnidae, to their venom and their use (!) in therapy. A classification of British spiders precedes the second chapter of the first part, where the different species of spiders are described according to their aspect and their alimentary habits. The second part includes as well some general description of terrestrial and fluvial shells and their classification. The largest part deals with marine shells and is illustrated by splendid plates. Lister describes exhaustively both Bivalves and Gastropods, including however also a sea-urchin among the molluscs; the last section is dedicated to the fossil shells which are found in England.