12mo., pp. , 159, ; a very good copy in eighteenth-century calf, rubbed, spine label wanting; clear-cut armorial bookplate to front pastedown of Edward Blount of Blagdon (d. 1726).
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Aristippus, or, Monsieur de Balsac’s Masterpiece, being a Discourse concerning the Court … Englished by R.W.
First edition in English of Aristippe (1657), a treatise on wisdom in political administration dedicated to Queen Christina of Sweden, who was an admirer. Balzac was particularly reputed for the quality of his prose, seen as raising it to the same perfection as Malherbe did for French verse. At the end is an apposite extract from an earlier work, The elegant Combat (1634), comprising his conversations with Pierre du Moulin. Wing B 612.
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First edition. On 4 Septemeber 1879, two days after the final capitulation of the French army at Sedan and the surrender of Napoleon III to the King of Prussia, the republican deputies at Paris proclaimed the end of the imperial dynasty and the foundation of the provisional government that was to become the Third Republic. Swinburne’s celebratory Ode, dedicated to Victor Hugo, was ‘thrown off at a heat on the arrival of the news – written, copied, and despatched in two days’ (Swinburne to Charles Howell, 9 September 1870, quoted by Wise). The poem was afterwards reprinted in Songs of Two Nations (1875). Wise 52.