3.05 Della Torre 1767

Giovanni Maria Della Torre, Incendio del Vesuvio accaduto i 19 d’ottobre del 1767, Naples 1767

Be 4015-3670 raro IV

The treatise is the work of Giovanni Maria Della Torre (1710-1782), a Roman scientist and philosopher who moved to Naples in 1741. In the capital of the Kingdom, he devoted himself mainly to teaching mathematics and physics, while also cultivating his interest in natural phenomena, particularly Vesuvius. He dedicated several publications to this volcano, which he visited several times, analysing the constant changes in relation to its eruptive activity, and one of these works was the present one, which refers specifically to the eruption that occurred in October 1767. In describing the event, the author recalls similar episodes that had occurred since 1751. Similarly, he analyses its effects on the territory, such as the formation of two large lava flows and the various mudflows caused by heavy torrential rains. Of particular interest is the intaglio plate at the end of the account, which offers a full-page view of Vesuvius and, in smaller panels, three illustrations of the volcanic cone to show the changes that occurred after the eruption. The copy on display here lacks the dedication to the Countess of Orford, who had generously supported Father Della Torre’s field research. [MV]

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