Meerman, Gerard

, a very learned lawyer and pensionary of Rotterdam was born at Leyden in 1722; of his early history, pursuits, &c. our authorities give no account, nor have the bibliographers of this country, to whom he is so well known, supplied this deficiency. All we know is, that he died December 15, 1771, in the forty-ninth year of his age, after a life spent in learned research and labour, which produced the following works: 1. “De rebus mancipi et nee mancipi.Leyden, 1741, 4to. 2. “Specimen calculi fluxionalis,” ibid. 1742, 4to. 3. “Specimen animadversionum in Cazi institutiones,” Mantuae Carpetunorum (i. e. Madrid), reprinted with additions by the author, at Paris, 1747, 8vo. 4. “Conspectus novi thesauri juris civilis et canonici,Hague, 1751, 8vo. This conspectus was immediately followed by the work itself. 5. “Novus Thesaurus juris civilis,” &c. 1751—1753, 7 vols. folio; a book of high reputation, to which his son John added an eighth volume, in 1780. 6. “Conspectus OriginumTypographicarum proxime in lucem edendarum,1761, 8vo. This prospectus is very scarce, as the author printed but a very few copies: it is however in demand with collectors, as containing some things which he did not insert in the work itself. The abbé Gouget published a French translation, with some additions, in 1762. The entire work appeared in 1765, under the title of, 7. “Origines Typographic^,Hague, 2 vols. 4to. An analysis of this valuable work was dratvn up by Mr.Bowyer, and printed in “The Origin of Printing, in tsvo Essays, 1. The substance of Dr. Middleton’s Dissertation on the origin of printing in England. 2. Mr. Meerman’s account of the first invention of the art,1774, 8vo. This volume was the joint composition of Messrs. Bowyer and Nichols. Meerman’s partiality to Haerlem, as the origin of printing, was attacked with much severity by Heinecken, who being a German, betrayed as much partiality to Mentz | and Strasburgh. It seems, however, now to be agreed among t) pographical antiquaries, that Heinecken paid too little attention to the claims of Haerlem, and Meerman infinitely too much. The dissertation of the latter, however, has very recently been reprinted in France, by Mons. Jansen, with useful notes, and a catalogue of all the books published in the Low Countries during the fifteenth century. 1

1 Dict. Hist. Bowyer and Nichols’s “Origin of Printing.” Dibdin’s Bibliomania and Typographical Antiquities. —Saxii Onomast.