8vo, pp. 17, [3 (blank)]; paginated in manuscript; occasional light spots, a few ink smudges, crossed-through ink notes to final blank; a good copy in plain blue wrappers; some wear to spine; blue-printed label to title inscribed ‘Belisario Simonelli’ in ink.
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Stanze inedite di Antonio de Pazzi e di Torquato Tasso in biasimo ed in lode delle donne. Edizione fatta per le nozze Mulazzani-Cappadoca.
Scarce first edition of verses ‘in blame and in praise of women’ by Antonio de Pazzi and Torquato Tasso, edited by the eminent antiquary and librarian Jacopo Morelli (1745–1819) from a previously unpublished manuscript in the Biblioteca Marciana, Venice, and dedicated to Baron Antonio Mulazzani on the occasion of his marriage to Atenaide Cappadoca.
OCLC finds only three copies, at the British Library, University of Pennsylvania, and Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin.
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Variety. A tale, for married people.
First edition of this verse fable on married life by William Whitehead (1715-85), the son of a Cambridge baker who rose to become fellow of Clare College, Cambridge, a successful playwright, and poet laureate in succession to Colley Cibber. ‘Variety’ is the tale of a well-read rural maid who marries her Milton- and Pope-reading lover only to find that they drift apart as each seeks the ‘variety’ of the title. An inheritance from a rich uncle offers the couple a new life in London but leads them into dissipation and further apart. Happily they rediscover their love, concluding ‘We live, my dear, too much asunder’. In his depiction of city life Whitehead could not resist having a swipe at the preposterous hairstyles of ‘British dames’ (‘Whilst the black ewes, who own’d the hair, Feed harmless on, in pastures fair, unconscious that their tails perfume, In scented curls, the Drawing-room’). The poem went through several London and Dublin editions in the same year.
THE PATIENT, THE ULTRA-PATIENT, AND THE UNSEDUCEABLE [WOMEN-PEARLS].
De Vrouwen-Peirle, ofte dryvoudige historie van Helena de Verduldige, Griseldis de Zagtmoedige, en Florentina de Getrouwe.
An attractive copy of the ‘Women-pearls’, a Flemish chapbook portraying three remarkable women and their marvellous stories derived from Medieval romances. It went through numerous and mostly undated editions, alluring readers with the added, winning visual appeal of naïve-style woodcuts and archaic types.