Fortunii Liceti Genuensis in Bononiensi Archigymnasio Philosophi Eminentis, De lucidis in sublimi ingenuarum exercitationum liber: in quo disseritur de radiis solis directis nullam attritionem, nullamque caliditatem in aere producentibus, ad reflexorum refractorumque discrimen: De duplici galaxia, caelesti, & elementari: De cometis in caelo, & in ignis elemento genitis, tum per condensationem aetheris utriusque sine gravitatis acquisitione; tum etiam per astrorum concursum, antiquioribus ignotum; De cometarum eclipsi; De cauda lucente solum in vmbra cometici capitis; & De nubium triplici differentia specifica, densiorumque levitate summa cum puritate coniuncta

Autore LICETI, Fortunio (1577-1657).
Tipografo Giulio Crivellari
Dati tipografici Padova, 
Prezzo 8500.00
De lucidis in sublimi ingenuarum exercitationum liber

4to (195x141 mm). [8], 120 pp. Collation: †4 A-P4. Liceti's woodcut device on the title page (Mercury chasing Pan with the motto “Fortasse Licebit”). Contemporary cardboards, recased, new endleaves, original marbled edges (quite faded). Leaves M2 and M3 partly detached. Slighlty, uniformly browned, some marginal foxing on the margin of a few leaves, all in all a good copy.

First edition of this treatise on astronomy, written in the form of a dialogue between the author and the anti-Copernican Libert Froidmont (1587-1658), which contains interesting astronomical observations and also deals with optics, comets and galaxies. The work includes 183 sections and was written in response to the Letter to the Prince Leopold of Tuscany, written by Galileo in 1640, of which ample excerpts are quoted.

In his work Litheosphorus (Udine, 1640) Liceti had attacked Galileo, contesting the explanations contained in the Sidereus Nuncius and in the Dialogue about the secondary light of the moon. In response Galileo wrote several letters, including the one sent to Prince Leopoldo, who had expressly requested to know Galileo's opinion about it. The letter to Leopoldo had manuscript circulation and was repeatedly revised and increased to become a true essay of fifty printed pages. Liceti received a copy in February 1641, replying to it immediately with the present work.

The present treaty also examines other aspects debated in the Sidereus, including sunspots; discusses the theories of Kepler, Brahe, Snell and others; and finally deals with galaxies and the theme of the plurality of worlds.

The work opens with a dedication addressed by the publisher Crivellari to Henricus Donnehall, and contains at l. † 4r-v a list of 44 works published by the Liceti between 1602 and 1640.

Fortunio Liceti, professor of philosophy and medicine at Bologna, was one of the most prolific Italian scientists of the seventeenth century. He was an opponent but also a respected friend of Galileo, with whom he had an intense exchange of letters. Of eminently Aristotelian formation, Liceti wrote with competence of medicine, astronomy, natural sciences, archeology, and literature.

Carli-Favaro, 185; Piantanida, 2199; Riccardi, I, 39; S. Drake, Galileo at work, Chicago, 1978, pp. 410-412; A.C. Crombie, Science, Optics, and Music in Medieval and Early Modern Thought, London, 1990, pp. 337-338.

  • De lucidis in sublimi ingenuarum exercitationum liber
  • De lucidis in sublimi ingenuarum exercitationum liber
  • De lucidis in sublimi ingenuarum exercitationum liber
  • De lucidis in sublimi ingenuarum exercitationum liber
  • De lucidis in sublimi ingenuarum exercitationum liber
  • De lucidis in sublimi ingenuarum exercitationum liber