image Hooke R, IM006895
Image number: RS.6108
Credit: © The Royal Society
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Title page of Micrographia




John Martyn (fl. 1649-1679, British), Printer
James Allestry (fl. 1649-1679, British), Printer

Object type

Image reference

Library reference

RCN 45230



height (page): 390mm
width (page): 305mm


   > Optics
      > Microscopy


Imprimatur and title page of Micrographia: or some physiological descriptions of minute bodies made by magnifying glasses with observations and inquiries thereupon, by Robert Hooke (London, 1665).

The imprimatur [left page as viewed] identifies that the printing of the book was ordered by Council of the Royal Society and authorised by the then president, William Brouncker, 2nd Viscount Brouncker (1620–1684).

The engraving on the lower-half of the title page [right] depicts the coat of arms of the Royal Society, which comprises a shield argent featuring the Three Lions of England, two white hounds gorged with crowns, a peer's helmet and an eagle holding a smaller shield. The society's motto, 'Nullius in verba', frames the bottom. The inscription below identifies the printers of the book, John Martyn and James Allestry, two early printers to the Royal Society.

Robert Hooke (1635-1703) British natural philosopher was a founding member of the Royal Society, elected in 1663. Before his career with the Royal Society, Hooke had been apprenticed to painter Peter Lely (1618-1680), where he learned to draw and paint. Though he did not engrave the images in Micrographia himself they were engraved after his illustrations.

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