[FIRST BOOK OF THE WESTERN MEASURES IN THE MIDDLE EAST / SCIENCE] Yeni mikyâslara da'ir risâle. [i.e. Treatise on the New Measures]

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[ISMAIL] GALIB BEY, (1848-1895), Tatyos Divitçiyan Matbaasi, Istanbul, [AH 1287] = 1870.

Original wrappers. Cr. 8vo. (20 x 14 cm). In Ottoman script (Old Turkish with Arabic letters). 76 p., 21 numbered woodcuts introducing the modern tools of measurement.

Extremely rare first and only edition of this first individual book introducing a new measurement system to the Ottoman Empire (and the Islamic world) which was written by the first Turkish numismatist. This book was published immediately after the Law on New Measures. Ottoman Empire was the first Islamic state to officially switch to the Western measurement system, with the "Mesahât ve Evzân ve Ekyâl-i Cedîdeye Daîr Kanûnnâme" [i.e. Law on New Measures] including 15 articles, dated September 27, 1869 (20 Cemaziyelahir 1286) during the reign of Sultan Abdulaziz.

This rare treatise was published as the first work of Ismail Galib Bey while he was a "mülazim" [i.e. lieutenant] in the Council of the State. In an edict dated 22 June 1870 located in archival documents, it is written that Ismail Galib "prepared and translated a booklet about the new metric system, and this treatise was presented to the sultan, and thus he was promoted". In the introduction of the booklet, Ismail Galib Bey states that he wrote this work due to the fact that old measurement systems were removed and a new metric system would be used in the Ottoman State as of March 1, 1874. He adds that his aim was to introduce that new metric system. The book includes drawings about various measures, tools, and systems. This work was appreciated by the Ministry of Education and therefore highly awarded. According to the information given by Ismail Galib, it was used as a textbook in Mekteb-i Rüsdiye. (Çakilci & Tatar).


Ismail Galib Bey was the son of Grand Vizier Ibrahim Edhem Pasha of Chios and was five years younger than painter Osman Hamdi Bey. He came into office in 1864 when he was just seventeen years old, and served in Ottoman State's most significant positions from that date to the end of his life. In light of the schools he attended and the private lessons he took, Ismail Galib Bey, from his childhood, was being educated to be a good bureaucrat. As a result of the education he took, he also proved himself as a decent numismatist with the first works on the subject he wrote.

Tatyos Divitçiyan Printing House was an early Armenian printing house in the Imperial Ottoman, which played an important role in the cultural life of the Middle East in the 19th century.

Özege 23165.; Only one copy can be traced in OCLC: 66952281 (Leiden University).