| Joel's Blog|
| Built-It Blog|
| Video Roundup|
| Classes & Events|
| Work Magazine|
|Match That Workbench Contest - 05/24/2010|
|Four Tips on Sharpening Knives the Experts Don't Want You To Know - 05/18/2010|
|Let's Talk About Hats (and mention benches and saws)!! - 05/11/2010|
|How to Install a Saw Blade in a Folded Back - 05/06/2010|
|The History of Mitre planes - Pt 2 1/2 - Details of the Gabriel Mitre Plane C. 1790 - 05/04/2010|
|We Lost Power Friday Afternoon - 04/30/2010|
|Magazine Mentions - 04/26/2010|
|The History of Mitre planes - Pt 2 - The early 19th Century Before Infill Bench Planes Were Developed - 04/20/2010|
|How to Cut Dovetail Joints by Hand - 04/16/2010|
|Moxon's Last Words. - 04/13/2010|
|Two New Gramercy Products and a Long Awaited New Book - 04/09/2010|
|The Story Behind the Rule - 04/06/2010|
|Why Tapered Irons? - 03/25/2010|
|Festool in its Infinite Wisdom.... - 03/23/2010|
|A Setback - Plane and Simple - 03/18/2010|
|Some Product Updates - 03/16/2010|
|How To Select The Correct Color Dye Stain For Your Project Part 2 - 03/10/2010|
|Festool C12 Drills on Sale!!!! along with 150mm Sanding Discs - 03/02/2010|
|The History of Mitre Planes - The Marquetry Plane - Part 1 - 02/24/2010|
|It should not be this hard - We Discontinue Nicholson Patternmaker's Rasps Because of Quality Issues. - 02/19/2010|
Hours: M-F 9:00-5:00, closed Sat,Sun
Our Guarantee & Return Policy
Shipping and Sales Tax Info
Phone: 800-426-4613 or 718-499-5877 Visit Us in Brooklyn: Directions to Our Showroom
© 1999-2019 toolsforworkingwood.com
Powered by 01 Inc. Coded entirely in NYC
When the prevailing climate cleared and they could return, they continued in this line of work. In time, the family business branched out and Joseph left to start up his own printing/publishing business with a focus on cartography, hydrography, the making of various scientific instruments and of course, getting admitted to the Royal Society.
During the time period when Joseph Moxon wrote the initial serial issues of Mechanick Exercises/Handy-Works, he was still involved with the Puritan sect, only just beginning to claim a reputation as a man of science (an unheard of step for a tradesman). It's not surprising to me that he included what was a fairly standard salutation in this early edition. He was, if nothing else, a man of discernment when it came to how to manipulate and politic his way around religious, political and academic circles.
My thesis is that his upbringing, the move to Holland, the stance against the Church, his battle to be admitted to the Society all paint the picture of a rebel, an early social reformer who sought to do things his way all the while working to bend the rules of the Powers That Be to fit his wants and needs.
By 1703, the role of the scientist was rising in social and political power. It's not surprising that, given the societal shifts of attention from the purely religious to the scientific, that a reprint of Mechanick Exercises would read as more modern and less a tribute to the religious side of life.
There is additional information from Moxon's writings that at one point, he had not sold enough subscriptions and threatened to simply burn the entire lot of issues rather than pursue the series any further. Luckily for us, he gained the backing of some very important people, such as Hooke, and Pepys and succeeded in his endeavors.
It's a standard phrase but he didn't use it elsewhere else in a closing salutation of any other chapters - which is my point. Something was going on in 1678 that made him a little more worried than usual. in 1678 stuff was happening. The Popish plot was a source of much upheaval and in May 1679 Pepys was arrested for treason. Might have been that. You mention that he was concerned at one point that subscriptions weren't selling. Any idea what year that was? I can make a pretty good educated guess that the sections on smithing were better subscribed than the section on woodworking because my edition is made up of edition two of the first two sections of the smithing section but the first edition of section three onward which suggests leftover pages of the first edition starting with section 3.
Incidentally by 1679 Moxon was already a member of the Royal Society (see 1679 frontispiece above) so the idea that he was a religious outsider at this time makes no sense. The spelling was corrected in the third 1703 edition because by that time an older spelling would have looked odd. Spelling and printing and literacy was progressing by leaps and bounds at that time.
The Royal Society was quite willing to ride both sides of the saddle (Hooke was vocal on this matter). Many members subscribed to proper religious beliefs in order not to run afoul of the prevailing church of the time which would have seriously jeopardized their financial backing (a generalization on my part).
Moxon was brought up as a social activist, engaged in publishing bibles and tracts supporting an outlawed religion. He apparently had little problem with going against the prevailing order, a stance which may have stood him in good stead as he became more and more involved with the Society.
For spelling, the page titles had been corrected to read "Joinery" but the name for the tool remained "Joynter". We don't know for sure who set the type for the 1703 edition but we don know that even in the earlier editions, there was some variation throughout the chapters (even in the volume on Printing) in spelling. People continued to spell according to how something sounded, along with spelling according to the developing rules of the literary community. Even in the 1703 edition you see some variation in spelling.
Moxon was the author, printer and publisher. Was he also the typesetter? We don't know. The variations indicate that once set, it was too expensive or time consuming to go back and reset a page to make a correction that in all likelihood no one would notice or complain about. The vagaries of reading and spelling in the 18th century were such that if it sounded right, it worked.
Moxon was also exposing trade secrets that had been jealously protected by the various Guilds. Not being a member of any Guild, and given his proclivities to espouse a new order of society, he joined ranks with the intelligentsia in supporting the role of the Philosopher (or all around scientific type) during the ascendance of the Society.
There is also the problem of the bookbinder, who (as I have learned) may have been nearly illiterate. All of which means we really don't know who set the type, who arranged the signatures and who bound the copies. What we do know that is that there is a huge amount of variation in pagination throughout both volumes of Mechanick Exercises, but that was often the case in 17th and early 18th C books.
On your other points. Once a page was set it would have been printed and the type redistributed. Stuff gets corrected only going forward. The later chapters of the first edition mentions errors in engravings and in the text which were corrected by the second edition. As for the variation in pagination the only problems I have seen are when different editions are bound together.
Moxon wasn't revealing any secrets that anyone cared about. After the great fire of London , there was such a shortage of craftsman to rebuild, any vestiges of guild restrictions on woodworkers were unenforceable and the guilds increasingly became social organizations. Power in the crafts slowly drifted to the trade unions who were mostly interested in wages - and were not able to restrict trade.
I think, based on my evidence and yours, you should take Moxon's remark at face value. In 1678 here was a guy at the cutting edge of information technology and he wasn't so confident that the project would continue to completion.