DESCRIPTION OF THE GREAT 27-IN. REFRACTING TELESCOPE and Revolving Dome, For the Imperial and Royal Observatory of Vienna. Designed and Constructed By Howard Grubb, F.R.A.S.
(London: Offices of "Engineering", 1881).
VERY SCARCE FIRST EDITION. The description, design and construction of the great refracting telescope constructed at Dublin for the Vienna Observatory. The telescope was built in Dublin by the Grubb Company, begun by Thomas Grubb (1800-1878), an Irish engineer born in Waterford. Grubb's made as many as 21 refractors of 13 ins. aperture or greater, as well as a number of reflecting telescopes of moderate size and many smaller telescopes. By far the largest of their refractors was the 27-inch Vienna telescope completed in 1878 for the Imperial Royal Observatory of Austria-Hungary, now the astronomical observatory of the University of Vienna. It was the largest refractor in the world at the time. The Observatory itself was designed to hold this new scientific marvel, it was built between 1874 and 1879, and was finally inaugurated by Emperor Franz Joseph I in 1883. The main dome houses the Grubb telescope. The telescope was largely used to study planets and comets, and for early studies of nebulas. Item #30539
First edition, an off-print from 'Engineering". With a large linen-backed engraved frontispiece of an Eight-Inch Equatorial Telescope, a linen-backed folding engraved plate with the plan of Telescope for the Observatory at Vienna, a linen-backed folding plate with views and plans of the Observatory at Vienna itself, a linen-backed full page engraved view of said telescope, and numerous plans and illustrations throughout the text. Folio, in contemporary navy cloth covered boards backed in navy morocco, gilt lettering on the spine. With the armorial plate of Sir Edmund Giles Lode, 2nd Baronet, a dedicated plantsman, the rhododendron loderi, a variety of rhododendron, was named in his honour. [ii], 29 pp. A handsome and very well preserved copy, the paper still quite clean and fresh with just a moderate bit of spotting, the binding sturdy and attractive, bumped at the lower corners.