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Michał Jan Borch
BORCH, Michał Jan, <i>Comté de</i>.

BORCH, Michał Jan, Comté de.
(1753 - 1810)

(Born: Warkland, Poland, 30 June 1753; Died: Warkland, Poland, 10 January 1810) Polish aristrocat.

A member of the Polish nobility, Borch inherited land in the former province of Livland. He was named Polish govenor of Lutzin, and held the military rank of commander of the Maltese Order. He was a member of many learned societies.

Biographical references: Catalogue of Portraits of Naturalists: 202 [1 portrait listed]. Gawel, A., "Memorial Michala Borcha z roku 1780 jako pierwsza w Polscé próba geobiochemicznych poszukiwan kruszcowych", Prace Muzeum Ziemi, no. 8 (1966), 31-48. Maslankiewicz, K., "Michal Jan Borch (1751-1810) and his activity in mineralogy and geochemistry", in: Aces du XIe Congès International d'Histoire des Sciences, 4, Wroclaw 1968, 284-86. Orgelbranda, Encyklopedia Powszechna, 1898-1912: 2, 618-9. PBA: Polskie Archiwum Biograficzne: 27, 401-405; S19, 407-417. Poggendorff: 1, col. 237. Polski Slownik Biograficzny: 2, 313-4 [by T. Turkowski]. Sarjeant, Geologists, 1980: 2, 585. Thomas, Dictionary of Biography, 1884. WBI.

Lithographie Sicilienne, 1777

1. French, 1777 [Collection catalog].
Lithographie | Sicilienne | Ou | Catalogue raisonne' de toutes les pierres | de la Sicile. | Propres á embellir le Cabinet d'un Amateur. | Par M. le C. d. B. C. d. C. | de plusie`urs Accade'mies. | [double rule] | [...3 lines of quotation, signed Thylesius Carm. VIII. lib. I...] | [ornament] | A Naples )( MDCCLXXVII. | [double rule] | Avec Approbation des Supérieurs.

4°: π2 b2 A-M4 N2; 34l.; [8], I-X, 1-50 p. Page size: 282 x 210 mm.

Contents: [2 pgs], Title page, verso blank.; [2 pgs], Dedication.; [1 pg], "Avis De L'Editeur."; [1 pg], Blank.; [2 pgs], "Table | De Matie'res Contenues Dans Ce | Volume."; I-X, "Discours Preliminaire."; 1-49, Text.; 50, "Errata."

Very scarce. A catalog of the collection of Sicilian stones and minerals Borch had accumulated, and which he has arranged into four classes: hard stones, semi-hard stones, soft stones, and miscellaneous. Under these headings, he describes various jaspers, agates, concretions, marbles, alabasters, dendrites, cave minerals, basalts, granites, serpentines, fossils, and quartz crystals. In his introduction Borch describes the mineral richness of the island of Sicily, and gives incidental information on other local topics such as the currency, local language, methods of measurement, etc.

Italian edition, 1777: An Italian edition is listed in a few early bibliographies as Conte di Borch Litografia di Sicilia. Napoli, 1777. However, no modern trace of this title as been found in any of the great libraries of Europe or America.

Bibliographical references: Agassiz, Bibliographia Geologiæ, 1848-54: 1, 326. BL [457.d.9.(1.)]. LKG: XIV 684a. NUC. Sinkankas, Gemology Bibliography, 1993: no. 783.

2. French, 1778.
Lythologie | Sicilienne | Ou | Connaissance De La Nature | Des Pierres De La Sicile | Suivie D'Un Discours | Sur La Calcara De Palerme | Par Monsieur | Le Comte De Borch | De Plusiers Accadémies | In arctum coacta rerum Naturæ majestas. | Plin. lib. 37. | [vignette] | À Rome | Chez Bénoit Francesi | Avec Approbation Et Permission | [double rule] | MDCCLXXVIII.

4°: π4 b4 A-Z4 Aa-Dd4 Ee6; 122l.; [i]-xvi, [1]-228 p. Page size: 292 x 226 mm.

Very scarce. Early treatise on the rocks of Sicily that is a continuation of the author's Lithographie Sicilienne (1778) and covering the same mineralogical subject. However, rather than being a catalog of specimens, Borch gives information on the deposits and quantites produced where the material occur.

Italian edition, 1778: An Italian edition is listed in a few early bibliographies as Conte di Borch Litografia Siciliaa, o concoscenza della natura delle pietre della Sicilia sequita da un discorso sopra la Calcara di Palermo. Roma, 1778. However, no modern trace of this title as been found in any of the great libraries of Europe or America.

Bibliographical references: BL [664.d.5.]. LKG: XIV 685b & XIV 686c. NUC: 66, 609 [NB 0646205]. Sinkankas, Gemology Bibliography, 1993: no. 785.

3. German, 1781 [German transl.].
Sicilianische Lithologie oder Kenntniss der Natur der Steine in Sicilien mit einer Abhandlung über den Calcara von Palermo.

8°:

Extremely rare. Apparently a German translation of Lythologie Sicilienne (1778). Listed in Dryander's catalog of the Bank's library and later the British Library Catalogue this book could not be found by the library in 2002. Unfortunately that was the only copy of this title traced.

Bibliographical references: BL [973.a.9.]. Dryander, Catalogus Banks, 1796-1800: 4, ??.

4. French, 1780.
Minéralogie | Sicilienne | Docimastique Et Métallurgique | Ou Connaissance De Tous Les Minéraux Que Produit L'Isle De Sicile, | Avec Les Details Des Mines Et Des | Carrières, Et L'Histoire Des Travaux Anciens Et Actuals De Ce Pays. | Suivie De La | Minérhydrologie | Sicilienne | Ou La Descriptions De Toutes Les Eaux Minérales | De La Sicile | Par L'Auteur | De La Lythologie Sicilienne. | [Portait medallion of the author's profile] | Turin 1780 | [double rule] | Chez Les Frères Reycends.

8°: *8 A-Q8 R4; 172l.; LXXX, 264 p., 13 folding tables (I-III occur at page 240, while the remainder are at the end of the text). Page size: 206 x 134 mm.

Contents: [I-II], Title page, verso blank.; [III]-VIII, Dedication to Ferdinand I.; IX-XIV, "Préface."; XV-XLIX, "Observations | Generales | Realatives A L'Histoire | De La | Minéralogie."; L-LXXX, "Introduction."; 1-230, Text (descriptions of minerals in a classification system).; 231-248, "Minérhydrologie."

Very scarce. Borch's third book on the subject of the minerals and stones of Sicily. Here he lists and briefly describes with locality information the same types of mineralogical objects, including agates, jaspers, concreations, granites, etc. A concluding section describes the mineral springs of the island.

Bibliographical references: BL [990.e.12.]. LKG: XIV 687d. NUC: 66, 609 [NB 0646207]. Roller & Goodman, Catalogue, 1976: 1, 141. Sinkankas, Gemology Bibliography, 1993: no. 787.

5. German, 1782 [German transl.].
Herrn Grafen von Borchs Sicilianische Mineralogie nach den Grundsäzen der Probierkunst und Metallurgie ... Mit einem Anhang der Sicilianischen Minerhydrologie, etc. ... 1782.

8°:

Extremely rare. Apparently a German translation of Minéralogie Sicilienne (1780). Listed in Dryander's catalog of the Bank's library and later the British Library Catalogue this book could not be found by the library in 2002. Unfortunately that was the only copy of this title traced.

Bibliographical references: BL [973.a.10.]. Dryander, Catalogus Banks, 1796-1800: 4, ??.

6. French, 1782.
Lettres | Sur La Sicile | Et Sur | L'Isle De Malthe | De Monsieur | Le Comte De Borch | De Plusieurs Academies | A M. Le C. De N. | Écrites En 1777. Pour Servir De Supplément Au Voyage En Sicile | Et A Malthe De Monsieur Brydonne | Ornées De La Carte De L'Etna, De Celle De La Sicile | Ancienne Et Moderne Avec 27. Estampes De Ce | Qu' Il Y A De Plus Remarkquable En Sicile. | [ornate rule] | Tome Premier. [-II.] | [ornate rule] | [Ornament incorporating a portrait medallion of the author's profile] | [rule] | A Turin 1782. | [ornate rule] | Chez Les Freres Reycends.

2 vols. [Vol 1] 8°: xix, [1], 236 p. [Vol 2] 8°:

Very scarce. The published letters describing Borch's extensive trips through the islands of Sicily and Maltha. Because of the author's interest in mineralogy, he provides many vivid descriptions of his visits to geological formations and working mines.

Bibliographical references: LKG: XIV 688e.

7. German, 1783 [German transl.].
Briefe über Sicilien und Maltha mit Charten vom Etna, von dem alten und neuen Sicilien, nebst 24 Kupferstichen von dem Grafen von Borch an H.G. von N. geschrieben im Jahr 1777 als ein Supplement zu der Reisbeschreibung von H. Brydone mit Karten vom Aetna, von dem alten und neuen Sizilien und 24 Kupfern. Bern, bey der neuen typographischen Gesellschaft, 1783.

2 parts. [Part 1] 8°: [16], 198, [2] p., 3 maps, 4 plates. [Part 2] 8°: [4], 202 p., 20 plates.

Rare. Translated by Friedrich August Clemens Werthes [1748-1817] from Lettres sur la Sicile et sur l'île de Malthe (Turin, 1782).

Bibliographical references: LKG: XIV 689f.

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