8vo., pp. , 37, , wanting final leaf blank except for printer’s imprint; a very good copy in contemporary tree sheep, rebacked, some erosion to back cover.
US $1672 €1705
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A Letter to a Friend of Robert Burns: occasioned by an intended Republication of the Account of the Life of Burns, by Dr. Currie; and of the Selection made by him from his Letters …
First edition. James Currie’s Works of Burns with a life and letters was first published in 1800 and several times reprinted and enlarged.
When a new edition was proposed in 1816, the Rev. James Gray, the schoolmaster who had taught Burns’s children in Dumfries, sought Wordsworth’s opinion of the project. Wordsworth had been an admirer of Burns from an early age, and he writes: ‘I well remember the acute sorrow with which, by my own fire-side, I first perused Dr. Currie’s Narrative’, upset by the disclosure of the poet’s infirmities, the coarse intrusions into private life, and the ill-selected medley of his letters. Despite Wordsworth’s opinion that the offending passages should be removed, the book continued through several more editions and remains a useful work.
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WITHDRAWN FOR LIBEL LEWIS, Wyndham.
Filibusters in Barbary (Record of a Visit to the Sous).
First edition, scarce in the dust-jacket, ‘an account of his travels which Lewis had written after a holiday with his wife in French Morocco and the Spanish Sahara. The book … emerged as one of the liveliest travel-books of the time. Like all of Lewis’s writing, it was quirky and opinionated, but nowhere was his gift of observation put to happier or more vivid use’ (Bridson, The Filibuster). Sadly, after a suit brought against the publishers by one Major MacFie, damages of £250 were paid, and the book withdrawn and discontinued from February 1934. The bibliographies differ about whether this or the American edition has precedence but Lewis’s contract and advance came from Grayson so it seems likely the English edition does.
CENTENARY OF THE DEATH OF WILLIAM PENN [RICHARDSON, Jonathan].
The general Address (in two Parts) of the Outinian Lecturer to his Auditors …. London: Printed by W. Nicol, late Bulmer & Co. … 1822.
First edition, very rare. The Address is a revised version of the valedictory lecture given on 31 December 1818 to mark the centenary of the death of William Penn. It gives an explanation of the origins of the Society and then is entirely directed to the career and particularly the principles of William Penn, based on ‘traditional information’ and ‘publicly and privately attested facts’. The private information was doubtless supplied by John Penn (1760-1834), founder of the Society, who, as a surviving grandson of William Penn, succeeded his father to the moiety of the last proprietorship of Pennsylvania.