An autograph letter signed ('D. Brewster') to an unidentified 'My Dear Miss Mary', full of interest, not least foreshadowing the Brewster-Whewell debate on extraterrestrial life. Sir David BREWSTER, Scottish physicist.
An autograph letter signed ('D. Brewster') to an unidentified 'My Dear Miss Mary', full of interest, not least foreshadowing the Brewster-Whewell debate on extraterrestrial life
An autograph letter signed ('D. Brewster') to an unidentified 'My Dear Miss Mary', full of interest, not least foreshadowing the Brewster-Whewell debate on extraterrestrial life

An autograph letter signed ('D. Brewster') to an unidentified 'My Dear Miss Mary', full of interest, not least foreshadowing the Brewster-Whewell debate on extraterrestrial life

Small octavo, 4 pages (a bifolium), with a tiny blind-stamp in the top left-hand corner of the first leaf; St Leonard's College, St Andrews, 18 April 1854.

Two horizontal creases where folded for posting; traces of prior mounting in two corners of the last page; in excellent condition.

In this very engaging and open letter, Brewster discusses his current travel plans with his daughter to the wedding of a relative, an impending visit to Hurstbourne Park to re-examine the papers of Sir Isaac Newton (on whom he wrote an authoritative life), and the completion of his latest book, 'More Worlds than One. The Creed of the Philosopher and the Hope of the Christian' (published later that year). Most importantly, he refers to his review of 'Dr Whewell's extraordinary book'' ['On the Plurality of Worlds'] and his resolve to 'treat the subject at great length, in hopes of counteracting the effects of Dr Whewell's work'. He spends the next page explaining the errors of Whewell's ways. The lengthy postscript would have been a worthy letter on its own: 'There is a new and beautiful art invented by a Mr Duff of London, by which paper photographs are converted into oil paintings by painting them from behind. The oil colours are absorbed by the paper. They cost £5-5 each, and are singularly fine. I have seen two which cannot be distinguished from portraits in oil'.

Provenance: Collection of The Hon Barry Jones AC.

Item #115552

Price: $800.00

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