191 results in English
His Excellency: George Washington Esq: L.L.D. Late Commander in Chief of the Armies of the U.S. of America and President of the Convention of 1787
In 1787, the confederation of the 13 American states was descending into disarray. The coffers were empty, New York and New Jersey were in a dispute over duties charged on goods crossing state lines, farmers in Massachusetts were rebelling, and Spain and Britain were encroaching on American territories in the west. The Federal Convention was called to address the problems of governing the young republic under the existing Articles of Confederation. The convention responded by framing the document that became the United States Constitution. The convention delegates elected George Washington ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The Art of Making Mechanical Timepieces for Church Towers, Rooms, and Pockets
Manuel del Río was a Spanish Franciscan, said to have been a skilled watchmaker, who probably learned the trade in Oporto, Portugal, with Tomás Luis de Sáa. Del Río belonged to the Franciscan community in Santiago, where in 1759 he published Arte de los reloxes de ruedas (The art of making mechanical timepieces). The work was reissued in 1789 in Madrid by del Río’s disciple Ramón Durán. That edition is presented here. The prologue states that one of the reasons for writing the book was the lack of manuals ...
Contributed by National Library of Spain
Declaration of Independence. In Congress, July 4, 1776, a Declaration by the Representatives of the United States of America, in General Congress Assembled.
This document is the first printed version of the American Declaration of Independence. On June 7, 1776, Richard Henry Lee of Virginia introduced a resolution urging Congress, meeting in Philadelphia, to declare independence from Great Britain. Four days later, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Roger Sherman, and Robert R. Livingston were appointed as a committee to draft a declaration of independence. The committee’s draft was read in Congress on June 28. On July 4, Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence, containing a list of grievances against the British ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Topographical Notes on Notable Places Visited by Her Imperial Majesty in Belarusian Vicegerencies
This book, published in Saint Petersburg in 1780 by the Russian Imperial Academy of Science, is about the history of and conditions in the eastern Belarusian lands visited by the Empress Catherine (the Great) in May of that year. The work includes detailed information about localities in the Polotsk and Mogil'ov territory (namestnichestva), including the population and descriptions of castles, palaces, churches, and monasteries. Descriptions of places in Belarus start on page 38. The book also contains information about places along the route from Saint Petersburg to Belarus, such ...
The Precious Book on Noteworthy Dates
This short work, entitled Kitāb al-yawāqīt fī ma‘rifat al-mawāqīt, and copied by an anonymous scribe in Shawwāl in June-July 1775 (AH 1168), is attributed to Ḥusayn (or Ḥasan) b. Zayd b. ‘Alī al-Jaḥḥāf, who is said to have dedicated it to Abū ‘Alī Manṣūr al-Ḥākim bi Amr-Allāh, the sixth Fāṭimid ruler (died 996). The manuscript lists the 12 months of the year, each on one sheet, in the form of an almanac. The last page is a one-page guide to the interpretation of dreams, reportedly prepared at the behest ...
Map of Holland: According to Astronomical Observations, Measurements of Schnellius & c. and the Superiorly Redesigned Special Maps of F. L. Güssefeld
This map of the Netherlands coast is the work of Prussian cartographer Franz Ludwig Güssefeld (1744-1807). It was drawn based on the calculations of the renowned Dutch mathematician Willebrord Snellius (1580-1626), a professor of mathematics at the University of Leiden, who conceived the idea of measuring the earth using triangulation. Snellius’s discoveries helped to determine the radius of the earth as well as led to more accurate ways of measuring the distance between two cities.
Letters, Essays, and Sermons by Saint Gregory Nazianzus
This 18th-century manuscript is a collection of letters, essays, and sermons by Saint Gregory Nazianzus (died circa 389). The manuscript is thought to be the first Arabic translation from the original Greek and has not yet been edited or published. It is the second volume of a two-volume work. Gregory of Nazianzus, also known as Gregory the Theologian, is recognized as a Father of the Church in both the Eastern and Western traditions. He was born in Cappadocia (eastern Anatolia), where he spent much of his life. He was a ...
Extent and Location of the Governments of Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Matogroso, Cuyaba, and Towns of Native Americans Called Chiquitos
This map shows the present-day Bolivian provinces of Santa Cruz de la Sierra and Chiquitos, and the Brazilian state of Mata Grosso. The map indicates the settlements of native people, known at that time as Chiquitos. This area was a center of Jesuit activity and many of the settlements may have been the remnants of Jesuit centers, called reducciones (reductions or townships). The Jesuits began their missionary work in South America in 1609. At the height of their activity, they sponsored 40 communities that were home to more than 150 ...
Guide to Astronomy
This handwritten copy of Tian wen bei kao (Guide to astronomy) was made in 1790 by Pingbo, whose seals are on the cover of the first of the two juan. No other information on the copyist is available. Juan one is a collection of texts taken from Xing jing (Star manual) by Shi Shen (circa 350 BC), Tian wen xing zhan (Astronomic star observation) by Gan De (between 475 and 221 BC), Shi ji (The records of the grand historian), Tian wen zhi (Astronomy treatise) in Han shu (History of ...
Contributed by National Central Library
A Summary View of the Rights of British America: Set Forth in Some Resolutions Intended for the Inspection of the Present Delegates of the People of Virginia, Now in Convention / by a Native, and Member of the House of Burgesses
This pamphlet is Thomas Jefferson’s personal copy of A Summary View of the Rights of British America, which he originally drafted in July 1774 as a set of instructions for the Virginia delegates to the first Continental Congress. Jefferson argued that the British Parliament had no rights to govern the colonies, which he claimed had been independent since their founding. He also described the usurpations of power and deviations from law committed by King George III and Parliament. Jefferson was not present in the Virginia House when his draft ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The Macedonian Landscape
Franz Johann Joseph von Reilly (1766−1820) was an Austrian writer and poet, geographer, bookseller, and art dealer. His cartographic works included a world atlas, published in 1794−96, an atlas of Germany (1803), and his Allgemeiner Postatlas (General postal atlas), a work of 1799 with 40 maps showing postal routes, the first such atlas published anywhere in the world. Shown here is von Reilly’s map of Macedonia, which includes parts of present-day Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM). Bordered on the north by Serbia and ...
Album of Appreciation of the Fragrance of Spring
Takuhanga is a printing technique in which a cloth-covered cotton ball containing black ink is patted on wet paper placed on an intaglio-engraved woodblock. The technique derives from takuhon, the art of rubbing found in Chinese copybooks printed from the works of old masters of calligraphy. This late-18th-century takuhangaalbum includes poems in the Chinese style celebrating the spring scenery of Kyoto written by learned men from the city who were students of Chinese literature, including Iwagaki Ryūkei (1741−1808). The drawings are by prominent Kyoto artists from the time ...
Contributed by National Diet Library
The Insect Book
Ehon mushi-erami (The insect book) is by the ukiyo-e painter Kitagawa Utamaro (circa 1753−1806). It was created by him before he produced the bijin-ga (pictures of beautiful women) for which he is famous. Each double page of the book contains a painted illustration of a plant and two species of insects, along with two kyōka (a poem style originating from waka, literally, Japanese poems). The kyōka are ostensibly insect-themed love poems. In all, 15 colored wood-block prints are included. The work demonstrates Utamaro’s skill at drawing, as well ...
Contributed by National Diet Library
Edict Prohibiting Traveling Shows Throughout Tuscany
This edict, dated February 1, 1780, was promulgated by Domenico Brichieri Colombi, fiscal auditor of the city of Florence, in execution of orders issued by Pietro Leopoldo of Lorraine, Grand Duke of Tuscany (reigned 1765−90). It prohibited public performances by traveling entertainers so as not to give to the people “opportunities to dissipate themselves vainly.” The edict applied to “Charlatans, Cantimbanchi [street singers], Storytellers, Puppeteers, Peddlers, Jugglers, and all those who carry on freak shows, exhibit Machines, Animals, or who sell secrets, and to any other foreigner who goes ...
Map of the New Discoveries in the Eastern Ocean
This Russian map of 1781 depicts parts of eastern Siberia and the northwestern part of the North American continent, including places reached by the Russians Mikhail Gvozdev and Ivan Sind, the English explorer Captain James Cook, and others. In 1732, the expedition led by Gvozdev and the navigator Ivan Fedorov crossed the Bering Strait between Asia and America, discovered the Diomede Islands, and approached Alaska in the vicinity of Cape Prince of Wales. The expedition landed on the shore of the North American mainland, marked on the map as the ...
Map Presenting the Discoveries of Russian Navigators in the Pacific Ocean, as Well as Those of Captain Cook
This 1787 map shows the voyages of the leading Russian explorers of the North Pacific: Bering, Chirikov, Krenitsyn, Shpanberg, Walton, Shel'ting, and Petushkov. It also shows the 1778-79 voyage of British Captain James Cook. The route of each voyage is depicted in great detail, with ship locations plotted by the day. Other details on the map include administrative borders, population centers, Chukchi dwellings, and impassable ice. The inset map is of Kodiak Island, Alaska, denoted here by its Russian name of Kykhtak.
A Map of Saint Petersburg Province and County
The complete title of this 1792 watercolor manuscript map is “A map of Saint Petersburg province and county including parts of other counties belonging to the province, such as Shlisselburg, Sofeisk, Оranienbaum and Rozhdestveno with Saint Petersburg as the administrative center from which it radiates for 40 versts.” The text goes on to explain that part “of this province, previously called Ingria, was conquered from Sweden in 1702 and according to the Treaty of Nystad, in 1721 Ingria was formally ceded to Russia by Sweden. On May 16, 1703 Saint ...
Painting of the Gathering at the Orchid Pavilion during the Spring Purification Festival
This rubbing scroll combines two works: Lanting xu tie (Calligraphy of the preface to the poems composed at the Orchid Pavilion) by Wang Xizhi (321−79), and Liu shang tu (The floating goblets), originally a painting, by the Song artist Li Gonglin (1049−1106). Emperor Qianlong (reigned 1736−95) commissioned this scroll, which was reprinted from the Song rubbing with the missing parts added, based on the fragment of Lanting tu (Illustrations of Lanting) by Zhu Yiyin (1536−1603), Prince Yi of the Ming dynasty. The missing part of the ...
Contributed by National Library of China
Dream of the Red Chamber in 120 Chapters
Xin jian quan bu xiu xiang Hong lou meng (Newly printed complete illustrated edition of the Dream of the red chamber) is also known as the Cheng-A edition. It is the first printed edition of the classic novel written by Cao Xueqin (circa 1715−63), one of China’s greatest novelists. Included here are the preface and comments by Zhang Ruzhi at the tops of the pages, the table of contents, and three chapters. The book was in the collection of Zheng Zhenduo (1898–1958) before entering the collections of ...
Contributed by National Library of China
Explaining and Analyzing Characters, in 15 Juan
Shuo wen jie zi (Explaining and analyzing characters), often abridged as Shuo wen, was compiled by Xu Shen (circa 58−circa 147), a Confucian scholar and linguist of the Eastern Han dynasty. This is the first Chinese dictionary to use the principle of organization by sections with shared components, called bu shou (radicals), and to analyze the form, meaning, and pronunciation of each character, using the liu shu (six categories of Chinese characters) theory, to give the rationale behind them, as well as their interrelation. It is the forerunner of ...
Contributed by National Library of China
Palestine, Tribes, and Jerusalem
Jean Baptiste Bourguignon d’Anville (1697-1782) was one of the most important French geographers of the 18th century. He worked during the reigns of Louis XV and Louis XVI. D’Anville’s approach to geography was geometric; he believed that man’s presence was worthy of acknowledgement only insofar as it helped the cartographer to establish the boundaries of a place. He focused on fidelity to what was documented about the territory in question using knowledge gleaned from travel journals, historical accounts, old maps, poems, and more. D’Anville was ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The Facilitator of Utility on Medicine and Wisdom
This manuscript copy is a 15th-century work by a Yemeni author, Ibrāhīm ibn ‘Abd al-Raḥmān ibn Abū Bakr al-Azraq, or Azraqī. It is a book of remedies dealing with medicinal uses of seeds, grains, and other foods and their nutritional value. The material is based in part on two earlier works: Shifā’ al-ajsām (The curing of bodies) by Muḥammad ibn Abū al-Ghayth al-Kamarānī, and Kitāb al-raḥmah (The book of mercy) by Ṣubunrī. Included at the end is yet another work, Burʼ al-sāʻah (Speedy recovery), a short treatise by the renowned ...
Grand Duchy of Lithuania
Tobias Conrad Lotter (1717-77) was a publisher of maps in Augsburg, Germany. He inherited the family mapmaking business from his father-in-law, Matthias Seutter. Lotter published atlases and numerous sheet maps, including this 1770 Latin map of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. At the height of its power in the 14th-16th centuries, the Grand Duchy comprised the territories of present-day Lithuania, Belarus, and western Ukraine. In the late 16th century, Lithuania came under the increasing influence of Poland. In 1569 the two countries united to form the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. As shown ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen Adopted by the National Assembly during its Sessions on August 20, 21, 25 and 26, 1789, and Approved by the King
On June 17, 1789, the members of Third Estate (those members of the pre-revolutionary French parliament, the Estates-General, who were not from the First Estate, the nobility, or the Second Estate, the clergy) gathered and declared themselves the National Assembly of France. Alarmed at this radical development, King Louis XVI (1754−93) decided to end their deliberations and barred access to the room in Versailles where they had been meeting. Over the next several days, most members of the clergy in the Estates-General and a significant number of the nobility ...
The Moon-Mad Monk, or Crazy Gazing at the Moon
Shown here is an illustrated anthology, in color, published in 1789 by Tsutaya Jūzaburō (1750−1797), a publisher of the Edo period (1600−1868). It contains 72 kyōka (humorous and satirical Japanese poems of 31 syllables) written about the moon and five pictures painted by the ukiyo-e artist Kitagawa Utamaro (circa 1753–1806). The title Kyōgetsubō (The moon-mad monk, or crazy gazing at the moon) means a man driven mad by the moon, but it is said to be a reference to the poet Gyōgetsubō (Reizei Tamemori 1265−1328), who ...
Contributed by National Diet Library
Map of Arabia, the Persian Gulf, and the Red Sea; Including Egypt, Nubia, and Abyssinia
This map of the Arabian Peninsula and surrounding areas was most likely created by the French cartographer and hydrologist Rigobert Bonne (1727−94). It is probably a proof copy of the map of the same title published in his Atlas des toutes les parties connues du globe terrestre (Atlas of all known land surfaces of the globe). The Arabian Peninsula is the main focus of the map, but it also covers much of the Nile Valley on the western shore of the Red Sea. The atlaswas created to serve ...
Contributed by Qatar National Library
Map of the Empire of Germany: Including All the States Comprehended Under that Name with the Kingdom of Prussia
Produced on the eve of the Industrial and French revolutions, this 1782 map by Louis Delarochette represents the German Empire nearly a century before Otto von Bismarck’s unification of the country. It is part of Thomas Kitchen’s General Atlas, originally created by Louis Stanislas d'Arcy Delarochette and purportedly designed to show the entire universe. Kitchen, whose name was also frequently spelled “Kitchin,” was a London-based cartographer and engraver of maps of England, greater Europe, and parts of the British Empire who was employed as a senior hydrographer ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Essay on Paper, Read in the Public Meeting held by Cercle des Philadelphes, August 15, 1788
In the second half of the 18th century, the French colony of Saint-Domingue emerged as one of the wealthiest territories in the Western hemisphere. Its economy was heavily based on slave labor and the production of sugar. Cap-Français (present-day Cap-Haïten) was the cultural capital of the colony and one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the Americas. In August 1785 a group of white residents of the city founded the Cercle des Philadelphes, a society whose aim was to elevate the intellectual and cultural level of their colony. In its ...
A Complete Map of the Mountains and Oceans of the World
Sankai yochi zenzu (A complete map of the mountains and oceans of the world) is a Japanese map of the world, created around 1785 by Sekisui Nagakubo (1717−1801). The map is based on the 1602 edition of Matteo Ricci’s Great Universal Geographic Map in Chinese, first produced in 1584. It is a hand-colored wood-block print, showing the world’s continents and seas, with relief shown pictorially. An alternative title, Chikyū bankoku sankai yochi zenzusetsu (A complete illustration of the globe, all the countries, and the mountains and oceans ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Robinson the Younger. For the Pleasurable and Useful Entertainment of Children
In 1720, just a year after its original publication in London, the first German translation of Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe was published. The work soon became widely popular. Only a few years later, German “robinsonades,” imitation versions of Defoe’s novel of shipwreck and survival, appeared on the market. The theologian, educator, and writer Joachim Heinrich Campe produced a two-volume adaptation of Defoe’s original book entitled Robinson der Jüngere (Robinson the younger). The book, published in 1779 (volume one) and 1780 (volume two), was aimed at children between ...
Map of the Ocean Showing the Different Routes of the Navigators around the World
Carte de l'Océan où sont tracées les différentes routes des navigateurs au tour du monde (Map of the ocean showing the different routes of the navigators around the world) was made by the French cartographer Jean-Nicolas Buache (1741−1825) to plan and subsequently chart the discoveries made on the voyage around the world of the French explorer Jean-François de Galaup La Pérouse (1741−88). In 1783 the French government decided to send an expedition to the Pacific to complete the work begun by the British explorer James Cook, and ...
Map of the Discoveries Made of the Northwest Coast of North America
Antonio María de Bucareli y Ursúa (1717‒79) was born in Seville, Spain. He served as captain general of Cuba from 1766 to 1771 and as viceroy of New Spain from 1771 to 1779. He reorganized the Spanish military units in the viceroyalty and strengthened and rebuilt fortifications along the Pacific coast and on the Gulf of Mexico, with the objective of forestalling encroachments by other powers. Bucareli took a keen interest in the northern reaches of New Spain. He fought Indian insurrections, invested in fortifying presidios and Spanish and ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Map Containing Part of the Coast of California
This pen-and-ink and watercolor Spanish map of 1787 rather sketchily covers the coast of what are now Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, and southeastern Alaska from the 44th to the 61st parallels. It includes coastline, coastal features, islands, navigational hazards, and pictorial representation of selected coastal mountains. The map was prepared by Bernabé Muñoz under the direction of Pedro Rivelles of the Real Escuela de Navegación, Cadiz, Spain. The Real Escuela de Navegación was a mapping agency that operated within and performed services for the Spanish Royal Navy. Exactly when the ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The Russian Discoveries from the Map Published by the Imperial Academy of Saint Petersburg
This map, showing the known geography of Alaska in the late 18th century, was based on an original Russian map by Gerhard Friedrich Müller published in 1754 by the Imperial Academy of Saint Petersburg. The map was printed in 1775 on Fleet Street in London by Robert Sayer, a noted English map and print seller. Because the North Pacific and Arctic constituted the last largely unknown parts of the world at this time, early maps of Alaska were popular in Western Europe and were frequently reprinted. The map was published ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Environs of Quebec City, American Blockade from December 8, 1775 to May 13, 1776
Environs de Québec, bloqué par les Américains du 8 décembre 1775 au 13 mai 1776 (Environs of Quebec City, American blockade from December 8, 1775 to May 13, 1776) was produced in 1777 by cartographer, author, and illustrator Georges-Louis Le Rouge (born 1712), royal geographer to King Louis XV. The map shows places and events related to the American siege of and attack upon Quebec City during the Revolutionary War. By this action the Continental Congress hoped to swing Quebec to the cause of American independence. The attack was led ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Map of the Terrain on the Left Bank of the James River Across from Jamestown, Virginia, Where a Battle Took Place on July 6, 1781, between the American Army led by the Marquis de La Fayette and the English Army under the Leadership of Lord Cornwallis
This pen-and-ink and watercolor manuscript map was drawn by Jean Nicolas Desandrouins (1729–92), an engineer with the French army of General Rochambeau during the American Revolution. It shows the layout of the Battle of Green Spring, in southeastern Virginia, on July 6, 1781. This battle came near the end of the war, and involved Continental Army troops under the Marquis de Lafayette and General Anthony Wayne and British troops under General Lord Cornwallis. The battle was a minor victory for the British and the last land battle in Virginia ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Map of Portsmouth, Virginia
This pen-and-ink manuscript map shows Portsmouth, Virginia, at the time of the American Revolution. Portsmouth served as a primary British post and naval base. On July 4, 1781, British general Charles Cornwallis (1738–1805) left Williamsburg, Virginia in order to cross the James River at Jamestown and reach Portsmouth. Once at Portsmouth, the British army loaded onto transports. Cornwallis and his men then sailed to Yorktown, where their defeat at the Siege of Yorktown would conclude the American Revolution. The map shows forts, bridges, country homes, marshes, a windmill, and ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Map of the Fortifications of Portsmouth, Virginia
This 1781 pen-and-ink and watercolor manuscript map shows the fortifications and houses of Portsmouth, Virginia, at the time of the American Revolution. Portsmouth served as a primary British post and naval base. On July 4, 1781, British general Charles Cornwallis (1738–1805) left Williamsburg, Virginia, in order to cross the James River and reach Portsmouth. Once at Portsmouth, the British army loaded onto transports. Cornwallis and his men then sailed to Yorktown, where the British defeat at the Siege of Yorktown would conclude the American Revolution. The map shows the ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Detailed Map of West Point on the York River, at the Confluence of the Pamunkey and Matapony Rivers
This 1781 pen-and-ink and watercolor manuscript map shows the region around West Point, Virginia, situated at the point where the Pamunkey and Matapony (present-day Mattaponi) Rivers join to form the York River. The map shows soundings and channels in the rivers, as well as ferries, roads, and vegetation. The villages of Bingham, Delaware, and Brackson are shown, along with Brackson’s Plantation, and the Meredy, Smith, Dodleys, and other plantations. The road to Williamsburg is visible in the lower left, running inland from the right bank of the York River ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Map of the Environs of Williamsburg, York, Hampton, and Portsmouth
This pen-and-ink manuscript map of 1781 shows the towns of Williamsburg, York, Hampton, and Portsmouth, Virginia, as well as the surrounding regions of southeastern Virginia. The area shown on the map extends from Cape Henry on the Atlantic Ocean to Williamsburg and south to the Effroyables Marais, the French term for the area known as the Dismal Swamp. The map shows part of the Chesapeake Bay as well as the James and Elizabeth Rivers and the Hampton Roads waterway. It notes towns, roads, rivers, creeks, bridges, mills, and a salt ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Rochambeau’s Army, 1782. Map of the Williamsburg, Virginia Area, Where the French and American Armies Camped out in September 1781
This topographic pen-and-ink and watercolor manuscript map of the Williamsburg, Virginia, area was made in 1782 by Jean Nicolas Desandrouins, a French army engineer and cartographer, shortly after the October 1781 Battle of Yorktown. It shows the encampments and positions of the French and American forces in September 1781, on the eve of the battle. The map provides a detailed plan of Williamsburg and its environs, and shows the location of estates, towns, and other significant sites. It shows houses and public buildings in Williamsburg, plantations in the countryside, roads ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
This Map of the Peninsula between Delaware and Chesapeake Bays, with the Said Bays and Shores Adjacent Drawn from the Most Accurate Surveys
John Churchman (1753–1805), a Quaker surveyor and cartographer from Nottingham, Pennsylvania, produced this hand-colored map for the American Philosophical Society in order to support the proposed construction of a canal between the Delaware and Chesapeake bays. The mapped area covers the Delmarva Peninsula, Chesapeake Bay, and Delaware Bay. It presents in particular detail the anchorages and navigational hazards along the shoals and sandbanks of the Chesapeake and Delaware waters. Churchman shows counties, towns and cities, roads, industries, rivers, swamps, ferries, and the Cape Henlopen lighthouse. This map was one ...
Contributed by Library of Congress