The Storm Compass or, Seaman’s HurricaneCompanion: Containing a familiar Explanation of …
The Storm Compass or, Seaman’s HurricaneCompanion: Containing a familiar Explanation of …

BECHER, Commander Alexander Bridport. The Storm Compass or, Seaman’s Hurricane Companion: Containing a familiar Explanation of the Hurricane Theory, illustrated with Diagrams and Accounts ….

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BECHER, Commander Alexander Bridport. The Storm Compass or, Seaman’s Hurricane Companion: Containing a familiar Explanation of the Hurricane Theory, illustrated with Diagrams and Accounts of Hurricanes. London, J.D. Potter, sole Agent for the Sale of Charts and Works published by the Admiralty, [1853].
Small 8vo. Contemporary half-morocco over grained cloth, spine lettered in gilt, boardsruled in blind; pp. viii, 56, [3, appendix
and errata], lithographic frontispiece; apart from minimal toning in places, a very good copy of a great rarity.
First edition. The author was the descendant of a scientifically-minded meber of the Royal Navy, hydrographe, inventor and author of books on navigation which are all exeedingly rare.. 'Alexander Bridport Becher 1796 - 1877, … fellow of both the Royal Geographic Society & Royal Astronomical Society, held the ranks of lieutenant (1834), commander (1844) captain (1864) & rear admiral (1877). Devised a form of pendulum artificial horizon that could be attached directly to a sextant for survey work. Retired 1865 but remained on the naval reserve' (Science Museum, online).

Small 8vo. Contemporary half morocco over pebble-grained cloth, spine lettered in gilt; pp. viii, 56, [4], lithographic frontispiece, diagrams in the text, light wear to binding, otherwise very good.
Very rare first edition. Alexander Bridgport Becher (1796-1876), fellow of both the Royal Geographic Society and Royal Astronomical Society was an experienced naval commander, hydrographer and inventor of improvements of navigational instrument. From 1832 to 1871 he edited the Nautical Magazine. At the beginning of this little volume Becher establishes the nature and theory of hurricanes. He then explains how to ascertain the centre and direction of a hurricane approaching. To illustrate this he gives a detailed account by a captain of a hurricane encountered in the Gulf of Mexico in 1838, as published in the Nautical Magazine. This is followed by other first hand reports of hurricanes, with precise meteorological data serving as a starting point to apply physics and mathematics to understand and avoid the phenomenon.
COPAC locates a single copy, in the British Library.
Provenance: Contemporay bookplate of George John Malcolm inside front cover. Malcom was a naval commander and captain.

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