1820s ORIGINAL GORGEOUS AND HANDWRITTEN ALGEBRA BOOK FROM A RURAL SCHOOL IN NORTHWEST ENGLAND, SHOWING IN GREAT DETAIL AND EXCEPTIONAL PENMANSHIP HOW A CHILD LEARNED HIS MATHEMATICS IN THE EARLY 19th CENTURY

By: ROBERT LITT

Price: $2,455.99

Quantity: 1 available

Book Condition: Good


On offer is a gorgeous and extraordinary book of Algebraic mathematical calculations by a young man in 1820. The book is signed at the end: “Robert Litt, Catgill Hall School, March 22nd A.D. 1820.” Catgill Hall was located in Egremont, Cumbria County, in Northwest England. This is a document of exceptional beauty and value. Primarily because Mr. Litt is an exceptionally talented young man with beautiful and delightful penmanship. This book most probably represents an extended period of learning in this young man’s life, at a school in rural England. The book is broken down into the requisites parts of learning algebra: Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication, Division, Algebraic Fractions, Involution, Evolution, and Irrational Quantities. The section headings and case subsections are all written in gorgeous gothic and cursive styles, with large, serpentine, flowing embellishments. Figurative designs are occasionally drawn in as well. These designs are mostly faces, but also contain doves and other birds drawn alongside or hidden inside the embellishments. Robert Litt’s handwriting is done in remarkably consistent and attractive cursive, easily readable and completely unsmudged. Each section is followed by a definition of the type of algebra. E.g. “Addition is the connecting of quantities together by means of their proper signs, and incorporating such as are like, or that can be united into one sum”; “Algebraic fractions have the same name and rules of operations as manual fractions in common arithmetic”; “Evolution, or the extraction of roots, is the reverse of involution, or the raising of powers.” After the definition of the section, the sections are broken down further into specific cases. Litt writes each case in the same embellished gothic style as the section names themselves. Each case presents a specific problem, the longform written out way to solve the problem, and then a number of mathematical examples that correspond to the problem. For example, in the “Addition” section: “Case II. When the quantities are alike, but have unlikely Signs. Add all the arithmetic coefficients into one sum, and those that are negative into another, when there are several of the kinds; then subtract the least of these sums from the greatest, and to the difference prefix the sign of the greater, annexing the common letter, or letters as before.” There are then 9 different examples of algebra with addition written down, such as “2a2-3a2-8a2+10a2+13a2 = 14a2” After the specific cases and examples of these algebra problems, most sections contain as their last few pages “Examples for Practice,” which were probably received from the schoolmaster for later practice. As the book progresses, the cases get more complicated and the mathematical formulas become much more complex. However, in the hand of Robert Litt’s gorgeous penmanship, these complex formulas are just as gorgeously written as the simpler ones in earlier sections. By the middle of the book, there begin to be pages filled with only algebra problems and their solutions, worked out step-by-step. Many of these equations contain a “tombstone” in the shape of a small star. This symbol is a stand in for “quod erat demonstratum” or “Q.E.D.” a term commonly used to denote the end of a mathematical proof. The final section of the book, “Irrational Quantities or SURDS” takes up almost a third of the book, and contains 13 different cases of increasingly complex algebra. The book is approximately 200 pages long, with writing in every single page verso and recto. The cover is a half leather binding, with marbled paper. The spine shows some wear, but structurally, the book is in very good shape. Internally, the paper shows only occasional signs of wear or age. The pages are free of tears or major discoloration. The handwriting is in black ink, which has faded slightly in some areas, but does not affect the writings legibility at all. Litt’s handwriting is clean and crisp, showing some exceptional penmanship throughout, especially in subject headings. Even though algebra is much the same as it was 200 years ago, this is an incredible document of the early 19th century, showing the way math was learned word-by-word and example-by-example, as well as showcasing the undeniable beauty of Mr. Litt’s penmanship and drawing ability. (Background: “July 10, 1820. AT CATGILL HALL SCHOOL, near WHITEHAVEN, Cumberland, conducted by the Rev. J. UNDERWOOD, and properly qualified Assistants, YOUNG GENTLEMEN are Instructed in the following Branches of useful Literature:—The Greek and Roman Classics, English Grammar and Composition, Writing, Geography with the Use of the Globes, the Use and Construction of Maps; History, Elocution, Arithmetic, Geometry, Mensuration, Gauging, Book-keeping, Land-Surveying, Logarithms, Trigonometry, Algebra, and the Elements of Euclid. Board & Education - 27 Guineas per Annum; Washing - 3 Guineas; Entrance - 1 Guinea.)

Title: 1820s ORIGINAL GORGEOUS AND HANDWRITTEN ALGEBRA BOOK FROM A RURAL SCHOOL IN NORTHWEST ENGLAND, SHOWING IN GREAT DETAIL AND EXCEPTIONAL PENMANSHIP HOW A CHILD LEARNED HIS MATHEMATICS IN THE EARLY 19th CENTURY

Author Name: ROBERT LITT

Categories: Books and Manuscripts General Overview, 19th Century Manuscript, 19th Century Rare Book,

Publisher: CATGILL HALL SCHOOL, EGREMONT, CUMBRIA, ENGLAND UK, 1820

Book Condition: Good

Type: Manuscript

Size: Folio - over 12" - 15" tall

Seller ID: 0009095

Keywords: KEYWORDS: HISTORY OF, ROBERT LITT, ALGEBRA, ARITHMETIC MATH, MATHEMATICS, CATGILL HALL SCHOOL, EGREMONT, CUMBRIA COUNTY, NORTHWEST ENGLAND, TRIGONOMETRY, ADVANCED, COMPLEX, ARITHMETIC, MATHEMATICS, UNITED KINGDOM, RURAL ENGLAND, BRITISH, EDUCATION OF A YOUNG MAN, SCHOOLBOY, FRACTIONS, EMBELLISHMENT, TOMBSTONE, Q.E.D., 19TH CENTURY EDUCATION, BRITAIN UNDER GEORGE IV, MATHEMATICS ACROSS THE AGES, BRITANNICA, HANDWRITTEN, MANUSCRIPT, DOCUMENT, LETTER, AUTOGRAPH, WRITER, HAND WRITTEN, DOCUMENTS, SIGNED, LETTERS, MANUSCRIPTS, HISTORICAL, HOLOGRAPH, WRITERS, AUTOGRAPHS, PERSONAL, MEMOIR, MEMORIAL, ANTIQUITÉ, CONTRAT, VÉLIN, DOCUMENT, MANUSCRIT, PAPIER ANTIKE, BRIEF, PERGAMENT, DOKUMENT, MANUSKRIPT, PAPIER OGGETTO D'ANTIQUARIATO, ATTO, VELINA, DOCUMENTO, MANUSCRITTO, CARTA ANTIGÜEDAD, HECHO, VITELA, DOCUMENTO, MANUSCRITO, PAPEL