4to, pp. , 35, ; A1-2 cut through and neatly repaired; C1 provided in facsimile; title-page dusty, a few spots and stains, lower inner corner of C4 and lower blank margin of final leaf restored; modern brown cloth.
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Cases of Treason …
First edition. Wing B272; Pforzheimer 25.3.
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A visit to Blestland.
First edition of this novel of utopian socialism which lambasts capitalism and religion. Blestland is a republican workers’ paradise located on a different planet which reveals how the divisions of earth can be abolished: by limiting ‘the enormous power for evil which capital can wield’. Monopolist powers are forbidden, resulting in a society in which ‘you will look in vain for class or religious hatreds, abject poverty and general discontents’. Published six years after William Morris’s News from nowhere, the novel fits securely into the contemporary corpus of utopian socialist fiction. Here organized religion is especially singled out as an evil: ‘fanaticism... accounts for the deplorable want of unity among the masses’, as monopolists stay in power by exploiting workers’ religious differences. Indeed, a missionary provides the plot’s nemesis. The plot manifests Blestland as a dream, which vanished upon waking.
EX BIBLIOTHECA BAGOT OF BAGOT’S BROMLEY HALE, Matthew, Sir.
Contemplations moral and divine, in two Parts.
An early eighteenth-century edition of Hale’s Contemplations in attractive contemporary English morocco. Though first and foremost a jurist, judge, and Commonwealth parliamentarian, Matthew Hale (1609–1676) wrote widely and extensively on other subjects: his Contemplations, first published anonymously in 1676, offer an epitome of his religious views which remained in print through much of the following century.