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British literature and history from the sixteenth to the nineteenth century, with an emphasis on poetry, fiction, and drama.
We usually have a selection of literary works from the STC and Wing period (i.e. before 1701), and a broad range of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century fiction and poetry, particularly the Romantics. We also have a selection of historical manuscripts, prints and broadsides, and works in translation.
Among important works which have passed through our hands are the editor's presentation copy of Milton's Lycidas, Swift's Modest Proposal, the autograph draft of Byron's She walks in beauty, the autograph manuscript of Jane Austen's only play Sir Charles Grandison, Dickens’s copy of Vanity Fair, Trollope's classical library, and, over the years, some fifty Shakespeare First Folios.
A True and impartial Collection of Pieces, in Prose and Verse, which have been written and published on...
London: Printed for W. Owen … 1749.
First edition. A compilation of open letters to the electorate of Westminster, written during the violent 1749 election campaign. Despite the brutality which characterised the election the editor hopes the letters might be impartially considered for their merits: ‘As many smart pieces were written...
Variety. A tale, for married people.
London, for J. Dodsley, 1776.
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...
WHITMAN, Walt, and Antonio FRASCONI (illustrator).
A Whitman Portrait.
[New York, Spiral Press, 1960.]
First edition, comprising extracts from Leaves of Grass, facsimile letters and a selection of woodcut ‘portraits’ by Frasconi. Numbered 149 of 525 copies signed by Frasconi, printed on Japanese Goyu paper.
The History of the Gunpowder-Treason, collected from approved Authors, as well popish as protestant.
London, Richard Chiswel, 1678.
First edition of an anti-popish history of the Gunpowder Plot. A well informed account drawing on both Anglican and Catholic sources, The History of the Gunpowder-Treason was published anonymously by John Williams (1633/6–1709), later Bishop of Chichester, amid renewed interest in the subject during...
WILLICH, Anthony Florian Madinger.
Lectures on Diet and Regimen: being a systematic Inquiry into the most rational Means of preserving...
London: Printed for T. N. Longman and O. Rees … 1799.
Second edition, much revised and expanded, printed in the same year as the first: ‘Many important and useful articles have been added, especially in the fifth Chapter, “Of Food and Drink.”’ Willich’s very popular manual was based on a series of lecture given by the eminent physician at Bath...
A Letter to Dr Mead concerning some Antiquities in Berkshire, particularly shewing that the White Horse, which gives...
Oxford, Printed for Thomas Wood … 1738
First editions. A Letter to Dr Mead was the first serious archaeological study of the Uffington White Horse. Francis Wise, Keeper of the Archives at Oxford University and later a friend of Samuel Johnson, contends that the horse, which he eulogises as a work of art, had Saxon origins, because...
The Psalmes of David translated into Lyrick-Verse, according to the Scope, of the Original, and illustrated, with...
[Amsterdam:] Imprinted in the Netherlands by Cornelis Gerrits van Breughel, 1632.
First edition, dedicated to Princess Elizabeth, the ‘Winter Queen’, daughter of James I. The translation, a companion to Wither’s Hymnes and Songs of the Church, was written at the request of James, and finished shortly before his death in 1625: ‘I was commanded to perfect a Translation...
Speculum Speculativum: or, a Considering-Glasse; being an Inspection into the present and late sad Condition of...
London, Written June XIII. MDCLX. and there Imprinted the same year .
The third of three editions in the same year, from an entirely new setting of type, with ‘Glasse’ rather than ‘Glass’ on the title-page, the errata formerly printed on L8 corrected, and the errors corrected in the caption title on p. 1
WOOLLEY, C. Leonard and Thomas Edward LAWRENCE.
The Wilderness of Zin ... With a Chapter on the Greek Inscriptions by M.N. Tod....
London: The Alden Press for Jonathan Cape, 1936.
Second English edition. The Wilderness of Zin originally appeared as the Palestine Exploration Fund Annual for 1914-1915, and was the first work by Lawrence to appear in book form. However, it was included in the P.E.F. series on somewhat disingenuous grounds: ‘During January and February 1914,...
The Posthumous Works … in Prose and Verse. Faithfully publish’d from his original Manuscripts, by Mr. Theobald....
London: Printed for A. Bettesworth, J. Osborn, W. Mears, W. and J. Innys, J. Peele, T. Woodward; and F. Clay. 1728.
First edition of an important collection, comprising 308 maxims, one short essay and a large number of previously unpublished poems (the third paginated sequence), based on manuscripts acquired from Captain Thomas Shrimpton, Wycherley’s sole executor.
De Cyri regis Persarum vita atque disciplina, libri VIII.
Paris, Andreas Wechel, 1572.
First edition of Joachim Camerarius’ Latin translation of Xenophon’s Cyropaedia, a partly fictional work on the life and education of Cyrus the Great which served as a model for medieval and renaissance mirrors of princes, including Machiavelli’s Il Principe. A beautiful...
The Complaint: or, Night-Thoughts on Life, Death, & Immortality [Nights First to Fourth] …
London: Printed for R. Dodsley … and sold by M. Cooper … 1743.
Second (first quarto) edition of Night the First, first editions of Night the Second and Fourth, second edition of Night the Third.
ZAPPI, Giambattista and Faustina.
Rime di Giambattista Felice Zappi e di Faustina Maratti sua consorte.
Nice, Società Tipog. 1781.
Uncommon Nice printing of the collected poetry of one of the most prominent literary couples of early 18th century Rome, Faustina Maratti (1679–1745) and her husband Giambattista Zappi (1667–1719). First published after Zappi’s death in 1723, the collection consists of 73 poems by Zappi and 38...
Some Time. Short Poems …
Stuttgart, Jonathan Williams, 1956.
First edition, one of 300 copies, inscribed ‘for D. G. Bridson, Sept. 21, 1957, Louis Zukofsky’.