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.
CADOGAN, William Bromley.
The Felicity of God’s Children, considered in a Sermon, preached upon the Death of a Lady, in the parish...
Reading: Printed and Sold by Smart and Cowslade; and sold by J. Rusher, Reading; Messrs. Robinsons, V. Griffiths ... & J. Matthews ... London;...
First edition, a funeral sermon by the popular preacher William Bromley Cadogan, a friend of John Newton, for the local widow Maria Littlehales, printed at the request of her children. A younger son of the third Earl of Cadogan, the well-connected churchman was vicar of St. Giles, Reading, and rector...
The Rational Guide to the French Tongue. Containing Tables, calculated to teach the Order of the French Syntax. Together...
London: Sold by Messrs. Debrett … Hockham, Miller, and Clarke … Lindsell … Dulau … De Boffe … [and seven others.] 1797.
First and only edition, rare, of an advanced guide to idiomatic French for those who already have a strong grasp of the language. For his examples of idiomatic elegance, Calbris draws on Racine and Corneille; there are ten short fables at the end of the first part.
Autograph letter, signed, to the novelist and socialite Lady Morgan, explaining why he cannot join her party.
‘Wednesday Morning’, no date, but late 1840.
‘I have been dying also several times during the last six months – I hope however to survive a few weeks when I shall be nearer to you when, in my new house in Victoria Square, I shall hope to see you frequently.’ Campbell suffered increasing ill health towards the end of his life, but continued...
Meteor … Translated by M. and R. Weatherall.
London, George Allen & Unwin, .
First edition in English of Povětroň [Meteor] (1934), with a signed presentation inscription from Čapek to Václav Palivec on half-title, dated 1936. In 1935, Palivec, the brother of Čapek’s sister’s husband, gave Čapek and his new wife as a wedding present the use of a house in...
CARDONNEL, Adam de.
Picturesque Antiquities of Scotland [I–II] …
London: Printed for the Author, and sold by Edwards … also by Edwards’s, in Halifax. 1788.
First edition, the very rare issue with the plates in sepia, printed directly onto thick wove paper.
The Dramatick Works …
London: Printed by S. Gilbert, 1743.
First collected edition, published in the year of Carey’s death, with his final revisions, ‘not only free from the errors of false and spurious editions, published without my knowledge and consent, but (upon this occasion) revised and improv’d, even from my own original copies’.
Poems on several Occasions … Third Edition, much enlarged.
London: Printed by E. Say, 1729.
‘Third edition’, in fact a substantially different work from the two rare (and much less substantial) pamphlet collections of 1713 and 1720. This copy has a single-leaf ‘Additional List of Subscribers’ bound before the main text and not recorded in ESTC.
Judith Gwynne …
Henry S. King & Co. … London, 1873
First edition, a scarce romance-cum-society novel.
‘CARROLL, Lewis’ [i.e. Charles Lutwidge DODGSON].
Sylvie and Bruno … London, Macmillan and Co. 1889. [With:] Sylvie and Bruno...
London, Macmillan and Co. 1880-1893.
First editions, presentation copies inscribed ‘Lizzie Wilcox from her affte Cousin the Author / Dec. 12. 1889’ and ‘Lizzie Wilcox, from her affectionate Cousin the Author / Dec. 27, 1893’ (two days before publication), a fine association:
The Life and Actions of Lewis Dominique Cartouche: who was broke alive upon the Wheel at Paris, Nov. 28. 1721. N.S....
London: Printed for J. Roberts … 1722.
First edition in English, published in the same year as the French original. Louis Dominique Bourguignon, alias ‘Cartouche’ (1693-1721), began his life of crime stealing fruit from women at the gates of his Jesuit school and books from his wealthy classmates. To avoid punishment for theft he fled...
Comedies, Tragi-comedies, with other Poems … the Ayres and Songs set by Mr Henry Lawes, Servant to his late...
London, Printed for Humphrey Moseley … 1651.
First edition of the witty and elegant drama and verse of a celebrated ‘son of Ben’, who said ‘My son Cartwright writes like a man’. According to Evelyn, Charles I reckoned The Royall Slave ‘the best that was ever acted’ after he saw it as the main entertainment on the royal progress...
A New Method of teaching the Italian Tongue to Ladies and Gentlemen. Wherein all the Difficulties are explain’d,...
London: Printed by E. Everingham at the Author’s Expences, and sold by James Round … and by Joseph Archez … and by the Bookseller in...
First and only edition, very rare, the only publication by Casotti, ‘Italian Minister, and Professor’, dedicated to Henry Petty, Baron Shelburne, (1675-1751) but printed at the author’s expense.
Consequences. A Novel ... in three Volumes ...
London: Richard Bentley and Son ... 1891.
First edition. A hasty marriage to a beautiful Spanish girl leads the young army officer George Kerr to repent at leisure. After a violent domestic quarrel in which he assaults his young wife, appalled at ‘the horror of the disgrace he had brought upon his manhood’, Kerr attempts suicide. The gun...
[CATHERINE II, Empress of Russia].
Le Czarewitz Chlore. Conte Moral. De main impériale & de maitresse.
Berlin, Fréderic Nicolaï, Lausanne, François Grasset, 1782.
First edition, very rare, of a speculum principis of the Enlightenment, by one of the time’s most enlightened monarchs. Le Czarewitz Chlore is a moral tale written by Catherine II of Russia for her two grandsons, the future Alexander I and his younger brother Constantine, while their father and mother,...
C., E. H.
On the occasion of a Bazaar held in aid of Funds required for the Completion of the first English Church at Dinan, which...
‘A Church Bazaar takes place to-day, / And for all aid we humbly pray / Tho’ many have giv’n with liberal hands, / A heavy debt against us stands ....’ Dinan, in Britanny, was popular with English visitors for health or leisure, according to the poem, and for many years English services had been...
Thealma and Clearchus. A pastoral History in smooth and easie Verse. Written long since by John Chalkhill, Esq;...
London: Printed for Benj. Tooke … 1683.
First edition, with the corrected state of the title, designating Chalkhill as ‘an acquaintant and friend of Edmund [originally ‘Edward’] Spencer’.
Phraronnida: a heroick Poem …
London, Printed for Robert Clavell … 1659.
First edition of the physician-poet William Chamberlayne’s best-known work, a long poem (14,000 lines) in heroic couplets blending Ariosto, Tasso and Greek romances. It deals with the tale of Argalia, a sort of knight errant rescued from the Turks and threatened with execution, and his love for Pharonnida,...
A Poem; dedicated by Permission, to her Grace the Duchess of Devonshire …
The subscriber’s edition, on thick paper; there was also a trade edition, disposed in 20 pages and without the inserted leaf, albeit with the same engraved title.
The Workes of our ancient and learned English Poet, Geoffrey Chaucer, newly printed. To that which was done...
London, Printed by Adam Islip. An. Dom. 1602.
Second Thomas Speght edition (sixth collected edition), revised much for the better by Francis Thynne; this is the variant with Adam Islip rather than George Bishop in the imprint. The portrait of Chaucer, which first appeared in the Speght edition of 1598, is the first engraved representation of the poet.
CHESTERFIELD, Philip Dormer Stanhope, Earl of.
Lettres ecrites par le tres-honorable … Comte de Chesterfield, a son Fils, Philippe...
A Paris, chez Panckoucke [but probably printed in London]. 1775.
First edition in French of Chesterfield’s famous Letters to his Son (1774). Although not recognized as such by Gulick (and not listed in ESTC), this is almost certainly an English production; press figures appear throughout all five volumes, the typography and disposition is generally English...