De la pirotechnia

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The pirotechnia of Vannoccio Biringuccio
De la pirotechnia 1540 Title Page AQ1 (1).jpg
Title page, De la pirotechnia, 1540, Chemical Heritage Foundation
Author Vannoccio Biringuccio
Original title De la pirotechnia
Translator Cyril Stanley Smith, Martha Teach Gnudi
Country Italy
Language Italian
Subject Metallurgy
Published 1540 (original)
1942 (in English) The American Institute of Mining and Metallurgical Engineers
Media type paperback
Pages 477
ISBN 0-486-26134-4
OCLC 20671722
669 20
LC Class TN144 .B4513 1990
Followed by 1959 edition

De la Pirotechnia is considered to be the first printed book on metallurgy to have been published in Europe. It was written in Italian and published in Venice in 1540. The author was Vannoccio Biringuccio, a citizen of Siena, Italy.

(The second book on metallurgy, De re metallica, was written in Latin by Georgius Agricola, and published in 1556.)

Both books were translated into English in the 20th century. The translation of Pirotechnia was by Cyril Stanley Smith, a senior chemist on the Manhattan Project, and Martha Teach Gnudi. Both books were illustrated with extensive, beautiful woodcuts. The translation of De la Pirotechnia has more extensive notes and footnotes.


  • Vannoccio Biringuccio (1959) [1540]. De la pirotechnia. Dover books on earth sciences: Dover Classics of Science and Mathematics. Translated by Cyril Stanley Smith; Martha Teach Gnudi. Courier Dover Publications. p. 477. ISBN 9780486261348.