[FIRST ENGINEERING ENCYCLOPEDIÆ IN THE MIDDLE EAST / SCIENCE] Mecmuatü'l-mühendisîn. [i.e., Encyclopediæ of the engineering]

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[TAMANÎ], HÜSEYIN RIFKI (1750-1814), Matbaa-i Âmîre, Kostantiniyye [Constantinople - Istanbul], AH 1260 = [1844].

Original full dark brown leather bdg. Decorated borders on boards, five compartments on the spine, and lettered gilt in the title. Cr. 8vo. (19 x 14 cm). In Ottoman script (Old Turkish with Arabic letters). 294 p., 17 folded engraved plates, and richly engraved illustrations.

Early edition of this extremely rare first encyclopedic book of Ottoman engineering. Multiple firsts in Ottoman literature of science, on various subjects of modern physics and mechanics, cartography, map making, surveying, arrangement of army camps, construction of pulleys, cannon shooting, etc. As another important aspect, the book contains the ratios between the measurements used in various European countries before the meter system and the Ottoman measurements. Early typographic imprint on European paper with watermarks.

Hüseyin Rifki also translated the ancient mathematician Euclid's book titled “Elements”, in which he laid the foundations of geometry, from the English original text by the English mathematician John Bonnycastle (1760-1821) in 1789, into Turkish with the name of "Usûl-i Hendese", together with Selim Efendi, a British-born Muslim engineer. He was appointed as "Mühendishâne-i Berri-i Hümâyûn Serhocasi" [i.e., The Chief Professor of the Engineering School] after the Code of Engineers was put into effect in 1806. He served as the chief teacher between 1806 and 1816. He was sent to the Balkans in 1816 and then was assigned to repair the holy buildings in Medina, Arabia. He died in 1817, just after returning from Mecca to Medina.

Özege 12620.; TBTK 14349.; As of November 2023, this edition is not located in the OCLC.