London: Bell & Daldy; J. Mitchell, 1867. First edition. Hardcover. Large octavo. xi, 221 (2)pp., 25 plates. Original blue cloth by Burns & Co. with bevelled edges and elaborate gilt decor and inlaid oval portrait on cover, gilt decor and lettering on spine, protected by modern mylar. Gilt edges. Brown coated endpapers. Contains 182 lithographically reproduced photographs by F. Cole pasted to twenty-five plates, with tissue guards, and additional in-text drawings. Billing lectured at the London Hospital since 1817 and was elected physician in 1922 at the hospital. His experience as a physician was published in a well-known manual "The First Principles of Medicine." The sixth, revised and improved edition is advertised on the last two pages of this publication "The Science of Gems..." by the publisher.
Taking great interest in art and an amateur artist himself, he collected engraved gems and coins and subsequently published this textbook on the subject, including an autobiography of the Italian gem-engraver, medallist and coin engraver Benedetto Pistrucci. Index and publisher's advertisement at rear. Binding with some wear along edges, small chops at corner and half inch chip at head of spine. Slightly starting at inside covers. Block slightly age toned. Binding in overall good, interior in very good condition. g to vg. Item #44013