ANACREONTEA

Anacreon done into English out of the original Greek …

Oxford, Printed by L. Lichfield … for Anthony Stephens … 1683.

8vo., pp. [20], 72, 79-114; a very good copy in contemporary mottled calf, front joint cracked.

£650

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First edition of the second translation into English (after Thomas Stanley’s of 1651) of the Anacreontea, a collection of poems long attributed to Anacreon but actually by numerous anonymous imitators. The present compilation, of fifty-two poems, is similarly anonymous, but contains translations attributed to Oldham, Cowley, Thomas Wood and Francis Wallis. Ode 16 is definitely by Oldham, odes 2, 3 and 17 almost certainly by Cowley (admitted into the canon by John Sparrow, and see Stuart Bennett, Catalogue LIX, for a copy with contemporary manuscript attributions in confirmation).

‘S. B.’, presumably the editor, explains in the Preface that the he is ‘an utter Enemey to the too narrow tye of a verbal Translation’, and indeed this is a collection of very free translations.

Wing A 3046; Case 167; Pforzheimer 224 (a ‘delightful collection’).

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