Lyell, Charles; Elements of Geology. 1st edition, John Murray, London, 1838.

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Lyell, Charles; Elements of Geology. 1st edition, John Murray, London, 1838. Octavo, pp. xix, 1 ad for Principles of Geology, hand colored frontispiece, 543, 294 text figures. 
The volume is complete and in the original tan boards and spine with original black spine titles. Spine professionally re-backed. The binding is tight, light soiling to boards, titles scuffed. The text is very clean and bright. Owner’s book plate on pastedown. In very good condition. Seldom seen in the original binder’s boards.
Sir Charles Lyell, Baronet, (1797 - 1875) was a Scottish geologist and is considered largely responsible for the general acceptance of the Hutton view that all features of the Earth's surface are produced by physical, chemical, and biological processes through long periods of geological time. This concept was called uniformitarianism. Lyell’s achievements laid the foundations for the science of geology, an understanding of the Earth’s development over time and also for evolutionary biology.  He was knighted in 1848 and made a baronet in 1864.
Lyell presented his views in his famous three volume work Principles of Geology (1830-1833). The combination of evidence and eloquence in Principles convinced a wide range of readers of the significance of "deep time" for understanding the earth and environment.
Lyell’s interest in geology was stimulated by the lectures of William Buckland. Lyell spent the long vacations between terms traveling and conducting geological studies. Notes made in 1817 on the origin of the Yarmouth lowlands showed the genius found in his later work. Although Lyell studied law, he spent much of his time in the field studying geology. Amongst his field studies was a visit to Sussex in 1822 to see evidence of vertical movements of the Earth’s crust. In 1823, on a visit to Paris, he examined the Paris Basin. Although he was finally admitted to the Bar, Lyell practiced geology far more than law. Lyell field observations were rapidly developing new principles of reasoning in geology and he was laying the foundation for his book which would stress that there are natural explanations for all geologic processes and that the natural processes of today and their products do not differ in kind or magnitude from those of the past, and that the Earth must therefore be very ancient because these everyday processes work so slowly. With the geologist Roderick Murchison, from 1828 until early 1829, Lyell explored districts in France and Italy where proof of his principles could be seen. In the region around Mount Etna he found striking confirmation of his belief in his natural causes to explain the features of the Earth. Returning to London, he set to work immediately on the first volume of Principles which was published in July 1830. A remark by Charles Darwin shows how successful Lyell was in presenting his method and theories.  “The very first place which I examined . . . showed me clearly the wonderful superiority of Lyell’s manner of treating geology, compared with that of any other author, whose work I had with me or ever afterwards read.” Lyell finished Volume II in December 1831 and the third and final volume in April 1833. During the next eight years Lyell revised Principles and the work sold so well that new editions were frequently required. Publication of the Principles of Geology placed Lyell among the recognized leaders of his field.
In 1838 Lyell’s Elements of Geology was published; and in it he described European rocks and fossils from the most recent to the oldest then known. Elements was intended by Lyell to be a fourth volume of Principles but he made it a stand alone for to be used by students and scholars in the field for observing geological features. Like the Principles of Geology, this equally well received and well-illustrated work was periodically enlarged and updated. The first edition in the original boards is exceedingly scarce.