The first part of the monumental edition consists of Books I-IV and all together there are 752 pages, 54 pictures, 4 appendices and the stress is placed on scientific value.
Book I is signed by Francisci and is a short book; 96 pages are divided into 8 chapters, underpinned by 7 illustrations. It brings the discussion about the names of the peoples who in the ancient times lived in Carniola. The author establishes the source of the name Carniola and speculates without presenting a historical basis.
Book II has 200 pages. It is different by its contents and the value. It has 27 pictures, one large supplement and it is very different from the first book. It is a short topography (topography and geography) and it represents the exposition of the whole work. It really is the first book of this monumental work that presents the country. It is divided into 83 chapters, which bring a kind of statistical review of Carniola. The author tries to explain in a simple fashion the land and natural phenomena he observes. There is the map of Carniola and the first detailed illustration of “the kozolec” (hayrack).
Book III has 168 pages of scientific descriptions. In 38 chapters Valvasor and in parts Francisci describe mountains, rivers, lakes, the weather, the damage done by the weather (especially hail), illnesses, plants, animals and mines. There is a special chapter about herbs; the witch’s ointment was mentioned and this provoked a long Francisci’s remark. Superstition is a kind of red thread of this book where Valvasor moves away from various kinds of superstitions. There are also very important reports about coal, an inventory of dormice (polh) and about the experiments with certain antidotes. In addition, there are 12 pictures.
Book IV was planned before the publication of Schoenleben’s Carniola. It is of medium length; with 232 pages and in 53 chapters, and it deals with natural rarities of the country – fossils, stones, natural forts, walking or traversing snow-covered territory (the skiers of Bloke). The author gives great attention to the subterranean – the Kras (Karst). He gives high praise to Kras, especially the Predjama. Special attention is focused on the Lake Cerknica – there are 78 pages of the description and to supplement the book there is the only appendix in the book – a panoramic map of Lake Cerknica; and 7 illustrations.