The Antiquity of Man by Arthur Keith, MD – early impression of 1st Edition
This antiquarian hardcover is the 4th impression of the 1st edition, which was printed in 1920. Its blue cloth boards feature an image of the famous Piltdown man skull fragments in gold gilt; the author name, title and publisher are stamped on the spine. The book is about 9" x 6" x 1 ½" and has 519 numbered pages that are followed by several full-page book ads.
The hard to find vintage volume has slight aging and moderate wear, including fraying and fading to spine, a slightly cocked binding and tanning to the end pages. The page edges have minor staining. The feps have a former owner nameplate and gift inscription in pencil.
This uncommon historical hardback would make a thoughtful gift and wonderful collection addition! A November 9, 1921 newspaper article titled, "A New Human Species" (with "Toothache in Early Man" as a subtitle) is included with the book. It descibes the skull of a scull characterized by a 'thick neck and bad teeth' found in Africa that had recently been put on display at the British Museum.
According to a review of the book by William Wright published in August of 1916:
"In The Antiquity of Man Professor Keith addresses himself to what is surely one of the most enthralling problems which can ever engage our attention. Were this doubted, we venture to think readers of the book will doubt it no longer.
Of the many different motifs of the book, perhaps the chief is the forcible and persistent plea which the author makes for the consideration of evidence on its merits, with a mind untrammeled by tradition and unclouded by preconceived ideas. It is a plea well worth making, for a narrow dogmatism is not in these later days by any means the peculiar prerogative of the theologian."
Wright concludes by saying, "The book is one which not only adds to the high reputation of the author, but reflects no little honour on the Institute over whose affairs he has presided for so long with such distinction."
Key terms associated with the book include Homo primigenius, Homo sapiens, the Piltdown skull, Paleontology, Eoanthropus, the Bury St. Edmunds and Trenton fragments, the Pleistocene period, Central and Western Europe, Mastodon and Stegodon, anthropoid ape, Naulette, Malarnaud, Heidelberg, mandible, cranium, temporo-maxillary joint, stalagmite, cave at Cattledown, Pleistocene man and Neolithic people of Southern England from the Mediterranean basin.
This book from the early 20th Century would make a thoughtful gift and great collection edition!
Item ID: The Antiquity of Man, Vintage
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