Advertisement

The Fellows’ Letters from Distant Countries: New Science, the “Other” and Imperialism

  • Manuela D’AmoreEmail author
Chapter
  • 141 Downloads
Part of the Italian and Italian American Studies book series (IIAS)

Abstract

Starting from the English sixteenth and early seventeenth century tradition of the ars apodemica manuals, Chap.  1 is based on Henry Oldenburg’s determination to include “inquiries” on—and descriptions of—distant countries in Philosophical Transactions. Its four subsections all refer to the late Restoration period: they describe the tools of learned travel in the age of New Science, and focus on the Royal Society’s correspondence from the East and from early America. The short extracts taken from vols. 1–22 of Philosophical Transactions are also meant to show the Society’s imperialistic vision of the “Other” and of the indigenous’ “knowhow” in most fields.

Keywords

Philosophical Transactions Robert BoyleBoyle societySociety Sixteenth centurySixteenth Mighty Kingdom 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Bibliography

Primary Sources

  1. Addison, Thomas. Arithmeticall navigation: or, An Order thereof: Compiled and published for the advancement of Navigation: More particularly, For the benefit of English Mariners, or Sea-faring men that delight therein… London, 1625.Google Scholar
  2. Anon. (Pierre Garcie). The Rutter of the Sea with Havens, Rodes, Soundings, Kennings, Windes, Floods, and Ebbes… London, 1520.Google Scholar
  3. Anon. (Richard Arnold). Mappa Mundi. Otherwise called the Compasse and Circuet of the Worlde and also the Compasse of every Ilande, coprehendid in the same. London, 1550.Google Scholar
  4. Anon. (John Fitzherbert). The booke of Husbandry, Very profitable and necessary for all maner of persons… London, 1568.Google Scholar
  5. Anon. (Pietro Martire d’Anghieri). The History of Travayle in the West and East Indies, and other countreys lying eyther way, towardes the fruitfull and ryche Moluccaes… London, 1577.Google Scholar
  6. Anon. (Cornelis Antoniszoon). The safeguard of Sailers, or great Rutter… London, 1584.Google Scholar
  7. Anon. (Robert Dallington). A Method for Travell. Shewed by taking the view of France… London, 1605.Google Scholar
  8. Anon. (Thomas Palmer). An Essay of the Meanes how to make our Travailes, into forraine Countries, the more profitable and honourable. London, 1606.Google Scholar
  9. Anon. Newes from Turkie and Poland. Or a True and Compendius declaration of the proceedings betweene the great Turke, and his Maiestie of Poland, from the beginning of the Warres, until the latter end… The Hague, 1622.Google Scholar
  10. Anon. (Robert Devereux). Profitable Instructions; Describing what special Observations are taken by Travellers in all Nations, States and Countries; Pleasant and Profitable… London, 1633.Google Scholar
  11. Anon. (Cotton Mather). A Monitory, and Hortatory Letter to those English, who debauch the Indians by Selling Strong Drink unto them… Boston, 1700.Google Scholar
  12. Blagrave, Joseph. New Additions to the Art of Husbandry. Comprizing A New way of Enriching Meadows, Destroying of Moles, making Tulips of any Colour. With an approved way for ordering of Fish and fish-Ponds… London, 1675.Google Scholar
  13. Blundeville, Thomas. A Briefe Description of Universal Mappes and Cardes, and of their Use… London, 1589.Google Scholar
  14. Boyle, Robert. Tracts Written By the Honourable Robert Boyle. About the Cosmicall Qualities of Things. Cosmicall Suspitions. The Temperature of the Subterraneall Regions. The Temperature of the Submarine Regions. The Bottom of the Sea… Oxford, 1671.Google Scholar
  15. Boyle, Robert. Tracts Consisting of Observations About the Saltness of the Sea: An Account of a Statical Hygroscope And its Uses… London, 1674.Google Scholar
  16. Boyle, Robert. General Heads for the Natural History of a Country, Great or Small; Drawn out for the Use of Travellers and Navigators… London, 1692.Google Scholar
  17. Bruton, William. Newes from the East-Indies: Or, A Voyage to Bengalla, one of the greatest Kingdomes under the High and Mighty Prince Pedesha Shassallem, usually called the Great Mogull… London, 1638.Google Scholar
  18. Camden, William. Angliae et Hiberniae. Nova Descriptio Veteribus et recentioribus nominibus distincta ad doctissimi viri Guiliel… London, 1592.Google Scholar
  19. Caron, Francis and Joost Schorten. A true Description of the Mighty Kingdoms of Japan and Siam. Written Originally in Dutch by Francis Caron and Joost Schorten, and now rendred into English by Capt. Roger Manley. London, 1663.Google Scholar
  20. Clarke, Samuel. The Life and Death of Nebuchadnezzar the Great, the first founder of the Babylonian Empire; Represented by the Golden Head of the Image… London, 1665.Google Scholar
  21. Denton, Daniel. A Brief Description of New York: Formerly Called New-Netherlands. With the Places thereunto Adjoining. Together with the Manner of its Scituation, Fertility of the Soyle, Healthfulness of the Climate, and the Commodities thence produced… London, 1670.Google Scholar
  22. Geraldson, Cornelius. An Addition to the Sea Journal, or, Navigation of the Hollanders unto Java, containing the appearance, shewes, or resemblances of the Cape of Bona Speranza, of the road of S. Bras, of the Promontorie of S. Iustus, and of the Cape of S. Augusta, with the true shapes of the coastes of Madagascar, Sumatra, and Java… London, 1598.Google Scholar
  23. Godwyn, Morgan. The Negro’s + Indians Advocate, Suing for their Admission into the Church: Or A Persuasive to the Instructing and Baptizing of the Negro’s and Indians in our Plantations… London, 1680.Google Scholar
  24. Johnson, William. The Light of Navigation. Wherein are declared and lively pourtrayed, all the Coasts and Havens, of the West, North and East Seas… Amsterdam, 1612.Google Scholar
  25. Hall, Joseph. Quo vadis? A Just Censure of Travell as it is commonly undertaken by the Gentlemen of our Nation… London, 1617.Google Scholar
  26. Heresbach, Conrad. Foure books of husbandry. Conteining the whole arte and trade of Husbandry, with the antiquitie, and commendation thereof… London, 1578.Google Scholar
  27. Howell, James. Instructions And Directions For Forren Travell. Shewing by what cours, and in what compass of time, one may take an exact Survey of the Kingdomes, and of Christendome, and arrive to the practicall knowledg of the Languages, to good purpose… London, 1650.Google Scholar
  28. Minadoi, Giovanni Tommaso. The History of the Warres betweene the Turkes and the Persians… London, 1595.Google Scholar
  29. Neale, Thomas. A Treatise of Direction, How To travel safely, and profitably into Forraign Countries… London, 1664.Google Scholar

Extracts from Philosophical Transactions

  1. Anon. “Enquiries concerning Agriculture”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 1 (1665–1666): 91–94.Google Scholar
  2. Anon. “An Advertisement of a way of making more lively Counterfaits of Nature in Wax and of a new kinde of Maps in a low Relievo”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 1 (1665–1666): 99–100.Google Scholar
  3. Anon. “Of the Way, used in the Mogol’s Dominions, to make Saltpetre”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 1 (1665–1666): 103–104.Google Scholar
  4. Anon. “Directions for Sea-Men, bound for far Voyages”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 1 (1665–1666): 140–143.Google Scholar
  5. Anon. “Of Some Philosophical and curious Books, that are shortly to come abroad”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 1 (1665–1666): 145–146.Google Scholar
  6. Anon. “An Appendix to the Directions for Seamen, bound for far Voyages”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 1 (1665–1666): 147–149.Google Scholar
  7. Anon. “Inquiries for Turkey”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 1 (1665–1666): 360–362.Google Scholar
  8. Anon. “Directions for Observations and Experiments to be made by Masters of Ships, Pilots, and other fit Persons in their Sea-Voyages”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 2 (1666–1667): 433–438.Google Scholar
  9. Anon. “Instructions concerning the Use of Pendulum-Watches, for finding the Longitude at Sea”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 4 (1669): 937–976.Google Scholar
  10. Anon. “A Narrative of some Observations lately made by certain Missionaries in the Upper Egypt”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 6 (1671): 2151–2153.Google Scholar
  11. Anon. “An accurate Description of the Cacao-Tree… given by an Intelligent person now residing in Jamaica”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 8 (1673): 6007–6009.Google Scholar
  12. Anon. “Observations concerning some of the most considerable Parts of Asia”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 11 (1676): 711–715.Google Scholar
  13. Anon. “An Account of a sort of Sugar made of the Juice of the Maple in Canada”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 15 (1685): 988.Google Scholar
  14. Anon. “A Voyage of the Emperor of China, into the Eastern Tartary”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 16 (1686–1692): 39–51.Google Scholar
  15. Anon. “A Table shewing the Time of High Water on the Coasts, and in the Ports of France”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 16 (1686–1692): 220.Google Scholar
  16. Anon. “An Extract of the Journals of Two several Voyages of the English Merchants of the Factory of Aleppo, to Tadmor”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 19 (1695–1697): 129–160.Google Scholar
  17. Boyle, Robert. “Other Inquiries concerning the Sea”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 1 (1665–1666): 315–316.Google Scholar
  18. Boyle, Robert. “An Account of the Honorable Robert Boyle’s way of examining Waters as to Freshness and Saltneß”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 17 (1693): 627–641.Google Scholar
  19. Childrey, Joshua and Richard Smithson. “An Extract of a Letter written by Mr. Joshua Childrey, containing an Accompt of a Passage by Sea to the West Indies”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 4 (1669): 1003–1009.Google Scholar
  20. Glover, Thomas. “An Account of Virginia, its Scituation, Temperature, Productions, Inhabitants, and their manner of planting and ordering Tobacco”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 11 (1676): 623–636.Google Scholar
  21. Greaves, John. “An account of the Latitude of Constantinople, and Rhodes”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 15 (1685): 1295–1300.Google Scholar
  22. Halifax, William. “A Relation of a Voyage from Aleppo to Palmyra in Syria”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 19 (1695–1697): 83–110.Google Scholar
  23. Halley, Edmund. “A Theory of the Variation of the Magnetical Compass”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 13 (1683): 208–221.Google Scholar
  24. Halley, Edmund. “An Historical Account of the Trade Winds, and Monsoons, observable in the Seas between and near the Tropicks”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 16 (1686–1692): 153–168.Google Scholar
  25. Heathcott, Mr. “Extract of a Letter of Mr. Heathcott to Mr. Flamsteed from Cabo Cors Castle on the Coast of Guinea, concerning the Tide on that Coast, Variation of the Needle”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 14 (1684): 578.Google Scholar
  26. J.F.M. and R.S.S. “Directions for the use of the following Tide Table”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 14 (1684): 458–462.Google Scholar
  27. Leibnitz, Gothofredus. “An Extract of a Letter of the Learned Dr. Gothofredus Leibnitz, concerning the Principle of Exactneß in the portable Watches of his Invention”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 10 (1675): 285–288.Google Scholar
  28. Lister, Martin. “An Extract of a Letter of Mr. Lister, containing some Observations made at the Barbado’s”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 10 (1675): 399–400.Google Scholar
  29. M.I. “Some Observations concerning Japan, made by an Ingenious person, that hath many years resided in that Country”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 4 (1669): 983–986.Google Scholar
  30. Moray, Robert. “A Description of the Island Hirta; communicated also by Sir Robert Moray”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 12 (1677–1678): 927–929.Google Scholar
  31. Newton, Isaac. “Mr. Newton’s Letter to the Publisher, containing some more suggestions about his New Telescope”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 7 (1672): 4032–4034.Google Scholar
  32. Newton, Isaac. “The true Theory of the Tides, extracted from that admired Treatise of Mr. Isaac Newton, Intituled Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 19 (1695–1697): 445–457.Google Scholar
  33. Norwood, Richard. “An Extract of a Letter, written from the Bermudas, giving an account of the Course of the Tides there”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 2 (1666–1667): 565–567.Google Scholar
  34. Oldenburg, Henry. “Epistle Dedicatory”, Philosophical Transactions, n. 1 (1665–1666): 1–2.Google Scholar
  35. Oldenburg, Henry. “The Preface to the Tenth Year of these Tracts”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 9 (1674): 1–3.Google Scholar
  36. Philips, Henry. “A Letter written to Dr. John Wallis by Mr. Henry Philips, containing his Observations about the True Time of the Tides”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 3 (1668): 656–659.Google Scholar
  37. Rembrantz Van Nierop, Dirick. “A Narrative of some Observations made upon several Voyages. Together with Instructions given by the Dutch East India Company for the Discovery of the famous Land of Jesso near Japan”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 9 (1674): 197–208.Google Scholar
  38. Smith, Edward. “An Account of a strange kind of Earth, taken up near Smyrna, of which is made Soap, together with the way of making it”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 19 (1695–1697): 228–230.Google Scholar
  39. Smith, Thomas. “An account of the City of Prusa in Bithynia, and a continuation of the Historical Observations, relating to Constantinople”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 14 (1684): 431–454.Google Scholar
  40. Tavernier, Jean-Baptiste. “More Observations of Monsieur Taverniers Voyages”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 11 (1676): 751–758.Google Scholar
  41. Wietsen, Nicholas. “An Account of a large and curious Map of the Great Tartary, lately Publish’d in Holland, by Mr. Nicholas Wietsen”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 16 (1686–1692): 492–494.Google Scholar
  42. Winthrop, John. “The Description, Culture, and Use of Maiz. Communicated by Mr. Winthorp”. Philosophical Transactions, n. 12 (1677–1678): 1065–1069.Google Scholar

Secondary Sources

  1. Axtell, James. Natives and Newcomers. The Cultural Origins of North America. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001.Google Scholar
  2. Barton, David and Nigel Hall (eds). Letter Writing as a Social Practice. Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing, 2000.Google Scholar
  3. Bazerman, Charles, “Letters and the Social Grounding of Differentiated Genres”. In Letter Writing as a Social Practice, edited by Barton David and Nigel Hall, 15-31. Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing, 2000.Google Scholar
  4. Burns, William E. The Scientific Revolution: An Encyclopedia. Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO, 2001.Google Scholar
  5. Hayden, Judy A. Travel Narratives, the New Science, and Literary Discourse. Burlington: Ashgate, 2012.Google Scholar
  6. Healy, Margaret and Thomas F. Healy (eds). Renaissance Transformations: The Making of English Writing (1500–1650). Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2009.Google Scholar
  7. Hunter, Michael (a). The Royal Society and its Fellows 1660–1700. The Morphology of an Early Scientific Institution, Second Edition. Oxford: The Alden Press, 1994.Google Scholar
  8. Hunter, Michael (ed.). (b). Robert Boyle Reconsidered. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994.Google Scholar
  9. Klein, Bernard. “The Overseas Voyage in Early Modern English Writing”. In Renaissance Transformations: The Making of English Writing (1500–1650), edited by Margaret Healy and Thomas F. Healy, 128–144. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2009.Google Scholar
  10. Lamb, Susan. Bringing Travel Home to England: Tourism, Gender, and Imaginative Literature. Cranbury: Associated University Presses, 2009.Google Scholar
  11. Malcolmson, Cristina. Studies of Skin Color in the Early Royal Society: Boyle, Cavendish, Swift (Literary and Scientific Cultures of Early Modernity). Burlington: Ashgate, 2013.Google Scholar
  12. McInnis, David. Mind Travelling and Voyage in Early Modern England. London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2013.Google Scholar
  13. Ordhal Kupperman, Karen. Indians and English. Facing Off in Early America. Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press, 2000.Google Scholar
  14. Sargent, Rose-Mary. “Learning from experience: Boyle’s construction of an experimental philosophy”. In Robert Boyle Reconsidered, edited by Michael Hunter, 57–73. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994.Google Scholar
  15. Short, John Rennie. Making Space. Revisioning the World, 1475–1600. Syracuse: Syracuse University Press, 2004.Google Scholar
  16. Smith, D.K. The Cartographic Imagination in Early Modern England. Re-Writing the World in Marlowe, Spenser, Raleigh and Marvell. Aldershot: Ashgate, 2008.Google Scholar
  17. Suranyi, Anna. The Genius of the English Nation: Travel and National Identity in Early Modern England. Cranbury: Associated University Presses, 2008.Google Scholar
  18. Todorov, Tzvetan. The Conquest of America. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1984.Google Scholar
  19. Waters, David D. English Navigational Books, Charts and Globes Printed Down to 1600. Coimbra: UC Biblioteca Geral, 1985.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of CataniaCataniaItaly

Personalised recommendations