Catalogue Number: 3653
On the anomalies of accommodation and refraction of the eye with a preliminary essay on physiological dioptrics
Sub-Category: Significant book (Aitken collection)
Author: DONDERS Franciscus Cornelius
Year Of Publication/Manufacture: 1864
Time Period: 19th C
Place Of Publication/Manufacture: London. UK
Publisher/Manufacturer: New Sydenham Society
Description Of Item: Original brown embossed cloth covers, 220 x 145 mm, with gold profile on front cover, which may be Donders, 635 pages followed by two lithographic plates after the index, 175 black and white figures in the text. Two rubber stamps for the earlier owner E, Wood / Optician, Equitable Buildings / 95 Elizabeth Street / Melbourne''
Historical Significance: This copy is one of four held by the Kett Museum. The other copies are Cat nos. 68, 3250 and 3256. This copy is unique in that a previous owner was a Melbourne optometrist who set up practice in Elizabeth Street in 1886. His name on this copy suggests he made use of it to learn more about optometry (or intended to do so - it is an voluminous book and not an easy read.), Other items to do with E,Wood, Melbourne optometrist, are at Cat nos 3164, 3165, 3185. It is also unique in that it has two lithographic plates at the end, which are not in the other three copies.This is one of the most important books in the evolution of optometry. Some knowledge of the refractive errors had emerged during the 18th C and early 19thC but ophthalmologists were not interested. [See Mackenzie 1854 (this collection Cat No 205) who advised bloodletting for presbyopia, or trying some lenses at an optician's shop or retirement to the visually undemanding pastoral pursuits of Australia. Donders changed that with his essay on "Ametropia and its results" published in 1860 (Cat no 37). This English translation was commissioned by the New Sydenham Society and published 4 years later. Donders (1818 - 1889) was Professor of Physiology and Ophthalmology at the University of Utrecht in the Netherlands. Cat Nos 37, 57, 68, 178 and 2242 are works by Donders held in this collection.
How Acquired: Donated by Terry Blake, Fellow of the College
Date Acquired: Aug 2018
Condition: Very good except for a slight break in the inside of the front cover hinge
Location: Nathan Library. Aitken collection