THE GENERATION GAME

Aristotle’s Compleat and experience’d Midwife: in two Parts.  I. A Guide for Child-bearing Women in the Time of their Conception, bearing, and suckling their Children … Together with suitable Remedies for the various Indispositions of new-born Infants.  II. Proper and safe Remedies for curing all those Distempers that are incident to the female Sex … A Work more perfect than any yet extant; and highly necessary for all Surgeons, Midwives, Nurses, and child-bearing Women.  Made in English W––– S–––, M. D.  The second Edition. 

London: Printed, and sold by the Booksellers. 1711. 

12mo, pp. [2], iv, 180, [4 (contents)], with a woodcut frontispiece of a childbirth scene (laid down), and a folding woodcut plate of ‘The Form of a Child in the Womb’ (to be bound opposite p. 48, but here loose, old repair along fold); cut close on the fore-edge, shaving some text (sense recoverable), else a good copy in early polished calf, joints cracked; early ownership inscription ‘George Asplen owght this’.

£950

Approximately:
US $1159€1064

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Aristotle’s Compleat and experience’d Midwife: in two Parts.  I. A Guide for Child-bearing Women in the Time of their Conception, bearing, and suckling their Children … Together with suitable Remedies for the various Indispositions of new-born Infants.  II. Proper and safe Remedies for curing all those Distempers that are incident to the female Sex … A Work more perfect than any yet extant; and highly necessary for all Surgeons, Midwives, Nurses, and child-bearing Women.  Made in English W––– S–––, M. D.  The second Edition. 

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Second edition, very rare, apparently ‘translated’ (i.e. edited) by the self-trained popular empiric William Salmon, a prolific author of domestic medical treatises; some of the text is drawn from Nicholas Culpeper. 

Aristotle’s Compleat and experience’d Midwife served as a companion piece to Aristotle’s complete master-piece (first 1684), the first sex-manual in English, and was advertised in (and sometimes bound with) editions of the latter.  First published in 1700 (four copies in ESTC), Artistotle’s Midwife was reprinted, mostly in undated editions, throughout the next century; the last listed in ESTC is a ‘fourteenth’ edition in 1776.  The nature of the content and the poor quality of the printing has meant that all printings are uncommon, many likely lost, and surviving copies tend to be in mediocre condition at best. 

Of this second edition, ESTC records three copies only: British Library, Birmingham, Glasgow.  There would however appear to be two issues – ours differs from that described in ESTC in that pp. i-ii are paginated correctly. 

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