Paris: de L'Imprimerie Royale, 1733. First Edition. 4to, pp. , 281 + 15 engraved folding plates of aurora examples by Ph Simonneau. Bound in contemporary full calf (lacks the spine label), lacks a couple of small pieces at the extrmities of the spine. Gilt coat of arms on the covers. Bookplate of the Societe Litteraire of Geneva on the end paper. Nice wide margins, generally a very good clean copy. DSB 9, p. 33; Honeyman 2112; Poggendorff II, pp. 17-18; Lande p. 397. Item #54205
Jean-Jacques d'Ortous de Mairan (26 November 1678 & 20 February 1771) was a French geophysicist, astronomer and most notably, chronobiologist, was born in the town of Béziers on 26 November 1678. Over the course of his life, de Mairan was elected into numerous scientific societies and made key discoveries in a variety of fields including ancient texts and astronomy. His observations and experiments also inspired the beginning of what is now known as the study of biological circadian rhythms. In 1718, de Mairan was inducted into the Académie Royale des Sciences.The Cardinal and the Count of Maurepas selected Mairan to replace Bernard le Bovier de Fontenelle as Associate Secretary of the Academie in 1743. De Mairan also served as the Academie's assistant director and later director intermittently between 1721 and 1760.Eventually, de Mairan was appointed editor of the Journal des sçavans, a science periodical, by Chancellor d'Aguesseau. Also, in 1735, de Mairan was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society and in 1769, a Foreign Member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences as well as to the Russian Academy (St. Petersburg) in 1718. De Mairan was also a member of the Royal Societies of London, Edinburgh, and Uppsala and the Institute of Bologna. With Jean Bouillet and Antoine Portalon, he founded his own scientific society in his hometown of Béziers around 1723. Mairan proposes that the aurora were vapors from the sun that entered the Earth's atmosphere. The treatise was published as Suite des Memoirs de l'Academie royal des Sciences for the year 1731.