The celebrated life of a colourful swindler and impostor, first published in 1745 and reprinted numerous times.more...
This is one of two editions printed for Buckland, Bathurst and Davies in 1793. The final 5 pages contain a notable cant dictionary.
Carew fell in with a band of gypsies as a wayward young boy. “After a year and a half Carew returned home for a time, but soon after resumed a career of swindling and imposture, which saw him deceive people to whom he had previously been well known. Eventually he embarked for Newfoundland, but stayed only a short time. On his return to England he passed as the mate of a vessel, and eloped with the daughter of a respectable apothecary from Newcastle upon Tyne, whom he later married.
Carew soon returned to the nomadic life, and when Clause Patch, a Gypsy king or chief, died Carew was elected his successor. He was convicted of being an idle vagrant, and sentenced to be transported to Maryland. On his arrival he attempted to escape, but was captured and made to wear a heavy iron collar; he escaped again, and encountered some Native Americans, who removed his shackles. On departure he travelled to Pennsylvania. He was then said to have swum the Delaware River, after which he adopted the guise of a Quaker, and made his way to Philadelphia, then to New York, and finally to Boston, where he embarked for England. He escaped impressment on board a man-of-war by pricking his hands and face, and rubbing in bay salt and gunpowder, so as to simulate smallpox” (John Ashton, rev. Heather Shore in Oxford DNB).
This biography is variously attributed to Bampfylde Moore Carew himself, to Robert Goadby and also to his wife, Mrs. Goadby. .see full details
An attractive Quaritch facsimile portfolio with examples of medieval letter and number forms in manuscript and print, beginning with the eighth-century St. Cuthbert Gospel and including several other British Museum/Library manuscripts, together with early wood- and metalcut initials..see full details
Second edition, a reissue of the 1799 edition with a new title.more...
Middleton’s designs include several cottages ornés, typical of the contemporary Picturesque movement, substantial villas, a public bath, a court house, an observatory, greenhouses, an aviary, a ‘gothick chapel’ and tea houses in the form of a Chinese temple and a Turkish temple. .see full details
The Female Quixote first appeared in England 1752 and in France as a ‘traduction libre’ by J.more...
-M. Crommelen in 1773 and again in 1801. Both French editions are very rare (Worldcat records US copies of the 1773 edition at Yale and McMaster and none of 1801). The 1773 edition was unillustrated.
‘...her Female Quixote became a classic, reprinted in the series of Harrison (1783), Cooke (1799), and Barbauld (1810), and translated into German (1754), French (1773 and 1801), and Spanish (1808)—title-pages of her later publications regularly style her ‘the Author of The Female Quixote’. The novel deserves the critical and commercial success it secured for Lennox. It recounts the adventures and misadventures of Arabella, the Quixote of the title, who like Cervantes’ Don Quixote confused chivalric romances with reality. At a time when novels were eagerly read by the public yet treated with suspicion by arbiters of literary taste, Lennox uses her character to demonstrate the mistakes that can be made by treating life as if it were a romance penned by Madame de Scudéry or Madame de Lafayette. What complicates Lennox's satire of romances is the fact that while her heroine lives in this fantasy world she enjoys the upper hand in the battle of the sexes, and a variety of startled men find themselves ill-equipped to deal with the eccentric heroine. Though Arabella is ultimately awoken from her dream of romance—by an elderly clergyman, appropriately enough—Lennox has demonstrated just why the romance was so appealing to women living in a thoroughly patriarchal society.’ (Oxford DNB).
First edition in French (and the first appearance of a work by Charlotte Lennox in French).more...
‘Henrietta is a bildungsroman, the story of a young woman’s education in the ways of the world, like Frances Burney’s Evelina, or Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey, although written a long time before either of them. But Henrietta’s naïveté is shorter-lived and much less comic than that of these later heroines; she spends most of the book calmly but firmly telling an interesting assortment of men and women what she will and will not do for money’ (from the introduction to the 2008 edition by Ruth Perry and Susan Carlile). It is a mature work by an author judged by Samuel Johnson as superior to Frances Burney, Elizabeth Carter, and Hannah More and was widely read. She is sometimes referred to as ‘the first American novelist’, having spent part of her childhood in Albany.
Henrietta was first published anonymously in English in 1758, immediately pirated for a Dublin edition, swiftly translated into French, and reprinted in England (with the author’s name) in 1761. The 1760 French edition is known in three issues: the first (ours) with the imprint of Rey, Amsterdam (1760), another with cancel titles bearing the false Londres imprint (and retaining Rey’s adverts), and a Lausanne issue. Rochedieu mentions a Rey imprint of 1758, for which we can find no confirmation in any of the usual catalogues..see full details
An orientalist tale, with a false London imprint. The witty avant-propos is a purported conversation between the author and publisher and is a satire on the vogue for English novels, epistolary novels, translations from the English, orientalist contes persanes and on the role of London publisher John Nourse in issuing so many of these. Nourse was a lynchpin in the provision of clandestine texts for the French market, printing in London and exporting to France works which could not be printed in Paris (including those by Voltaire and Montesquieu). Though Nourse’s name appears in the imprint, this may be as false as the ‘Londres’ statement: we can find no other imprint combining Nourse with Hardy in Paris, and it is proably all part of the joke.
Barbier, who cites an edition of 1769 not found anywhere in current bibliographical resources, attributes Giuliane to Crébillon, implying the present edition is indeed a translation. It is more likely to be an original work in disguise..see full details
A brief but detailed survey of the contemporary state of America, especially concerned with the progress of emigrant populations. Politics, economics and religion form the major themes but there are interesting sections of education, women and morality. Among the many observations:
‘...female education is conducted on a much more exalted scale than it is in Europe, a large number of female colleges having been established, in which the main effort is to teach the useful arts and sciences, without neglecting what are usually called “Accomplishments”.’
‘The reception given to Mr. Dickens during his recent tour in the United States may be regarded as a most encouraging indication of the kindly feeling existing towards the English...’
‘Political economy is one of the most difficult of the sciences; and yet many in the United States, who are incompetent or unprincipled or both, make politics the main business of their lives.’
The author had resided some 25 years at New York, Philadelphia, Washington, Richmond, Williamsburg and Hampton
Though there are several US copies, COPAC lists the BL copy only..see full details
A RARE CHILDREN’S BOOK, apparently the only extant work by this Sussex author.more...
‘You tell me, my dear Ann, that you wish to learn to read; so I shall give you this book, which I wrote for the first child I should chance to meet with, who was like to make a good use of it. There are some tales in it which I think will please you; and if I find you take pains to read, I shall give you some more books when you have read this: but if you do not try to learn, I shall not choose to write one more book for you, or to take the least pains to teach you to read, to write, or to work. Now I have told you this, if you are wise, you will let me see you try to read this book well: I think it is quite fit for a child of your age; you know you are now five and a half old’ (Preface). OCLC records copies of the 1825 first edition at the V&A and the Morgan Library only, and of our second edition at BL only (with a suggested date if 1840, which seems rather too late)..see full details
First edition in French of Dunallan; or, Know what you judge (1825); the last published (but first written) work of this once much-read Scottish novelist (1782-1825).more...
‘Grace Kennedy's novels (at least eight) were all published anonymously and rapidly in the early 1820s, and met with considerable success, being reissued late into the nineteenth century ...’ (Oxford DNB). .see full details
First edition, a rare and unusual children’s book, with fine engravings after the sixteenth-century drawings by Giuseppe Porta (known as ‘Salviati’).more...
‘Lewis developed into one of the most prolific, skilled, and versatile printmakers of his time. He was commissioned by William Young Otley to reproduce master drawings for the three-volume work The Italian School of Design, published between 1808 and 1823, and he engraved after works by such prominent contemporary artists as Sir Thomas Lawrence, Thomas Girtin, Franz Winterhalter, Sir Edwin Landseer, Richard Bonington, and J. M. W. Turner’ (Oxford DNB)
The subscribers list includes Francis Douce, William Young Ottley, Sir Thomas Lawrence, Samuel Rogers and Dawson Turner. The book was issued in two forms: on large paper with the illustrations as plates on India paper, and, as here, in chapbook form with illustrations and text combined. Both are are..see full details
First edition, Roscoe’s second issue, Fleeman’s fourth state.more...
First published in December 1764 Goldsmith’s philosophical poem is the first of his works to bear his name on the title-page. Taking its cue from from the French philosophes the poem is recounted by a lonely wanderer observing the character of the inhabitants of the nations, noting the effects of climate and the deleterious influence of wealth and luxury.
‘Where wealth and freedom reign, contentment fails, / And honor sinks where commerce long prevails’.
Samuel Johnson contributed lines 420 and 429-38 (and reviewed the work for the Critical Review, Dec. 1764). Goldsmith made numerous early revisions and this copy is an example of the fourth state (Fleeman)..see full details
A fable in verse by the abolitionist, poet, translator—and creator of landscapes in feathers—Susanna Watts (1768-1842). Watts urges readers not to be misled by the diminutive size of her insect protagonists: ‘The following little fable is not presented to the Public as a mere bagatelle of amusement suggested by the fashionable popularity of Entomology, but under a serious, anxious, and most sincere desire to inculcate respect and tenderness towards all the inferior creatures’. Indeed, animal cruelty was a particular bête noir of Watts, as was slavery, and she published widely on these topics, producing an anti-slavery periodical entitled The Humming Bird (twelve numbers, 1824–5). The Insects in Council encompasses both issues, as when Dragonfly implores his friend the Emmet: ‘Come, free all your slaves, and deserve our / Applause, / And nobly unite in our patriot cause!’. After Watts’ death, the discovery of her scrapbook revealed a remarkable breadth of interests, with entries of poems, mementoes, statistics, portraits (many of women writers), and data on Hindu and Arabic languages, as well as detailed diagrams of the hold of a slave ship. The extraordinary landscapes which she crafted from feathers won a medal from the Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures, and Commerce (ODNB). .see full details
First edition, extremely scarce, of this dramatic allegory of Anglo-Irish relations.more...
Trotter’s is a grown-up fairy tale, a masque-like play in which the dramatis personae are given both dramatic and Spenserian allegorical names. The Queen becomes England, Judith is Ireland and the eponymous Cindabright is also the Irish Patriot. A lengthy note explains that Judith’s dialogue references ‘the past state of a country abandoned to all the disadvantages of exclusion from a share in the social and political happiness and prosperity’. Trotter uses to explore a Spenserian world in which Ireland has recourse to question its historical treatment by the English. Trotter believes in the merit of fairies, which here represent Sentiment; she likes ‘their mystified nothings, through which we may detect beautiful wit at times’. In a common refrain over the loss of innocence, Trotter prefixes Cindabright by wondering, ‘Have the wonderful discoveries of modern science put to flight our pleasant fairies, with all their train of fancy play?’ Ultimately, Trotter need not have worried that ‘giant steam, with his real wonders’ would overpowered the products of make believe, for alongside the industrial revolution developed the peculiar Victorian preoccupation with fairies, most obviously articulated in era’s relative profusion of fairy paintings and stories. Seldom however are these corralled into patriotic invective, as here..see full details
An abridgement for children of Milton’s account of Adam and Eve, by the celebrated actress Sarah Siddons (1755-1831). Siddons’ admiration for Milton was lifelong: ‘By the age of ten she was already responsive to the poetry of Milton … Perhaps his curious combination of sensuality and austerity gave particular satisfaction to this girl who, as a woman said that she feared to play Shakespeare’s Cleopatra as she should be played’. After her official retirement in 1813, Siddons gave frequent dramatic readings of Milton and Shakespeare – as represented by Lawrence’s portrait of her with works by both authors –and Paradise Lost was her preferred text. Manvell suggests that Milton’s ‘strong dramatic sense and the grandeur of his rhetoric must have excited her’, but Siddons also saw the merits of his material for a juvenile audience. As she describes in the Preface to the present work, she completed her abridgements for the use of her own children that they might develop ‘an early admiration’ of Milton, and now chooses to issue them for public consumption. The work provoked particular invective from the London Magazine, which acknowledged Siddons’ greatness but was aggravated by her Miltonian foray: ‘could she really condescend to become an authoress on the strength of an eighteen-penny copy of paradise lost and a pair of scissors?’ The reviewer accuses John Murray of being blinded by Siddons’ fame in his agreement to publish the work. The Story of our first Parents was issued in the same year under the separate title, Abridgement of Paradise Lost, which is identical in every other respect. Perhaps the variants were intended to appeal to separate adult and juvenile audiences..see full details
First edition thus, of this compendium of the poetry of Felicia Hemans (1793–1835).more...
Called ‘the most considerable woman poet of the Romantic period’ (ODNB), Hemans published some twenty volumes and nearly four hundred poems during her lifetime. The present work, a posthumous anthology, includes her verse cycles Songs of the Cid and Records of Woman, as well as miscellaneous poems including ‘The Homes of England’, in which Hemans is thought to have coined the phrase ‘stately home’. Many literary peers paid tribute to Hemans following her death in 1835 of Scarlet Fever. In particular, Letitia Elizabeth Landon (see item 14) penned ‘Stanzas on the Death of Mrs Hemans’ (1835) and ‘Felicia Hemans’ (1838). This was answered by Elizabeth Barrett Browning, who remained ambivalent about Hemans’ talent. In his ‘Extempore Effusion’ of 1835, Wordsworth portrayed Hemans as an ‘insubstantial spirit’. The anthology’s titular verse play, The Vespers of Palermo, was first published by John Murray in 1823. Based on a mixture of ancient and contemporary discourse, it applies Staël’s and Sismondi’s interpretations of Italian destiny to post-war developments, including the Mediterranean Revolts of 1820-21. Other sources include Byron, Coleridge, Gibbon, Petrarch, Plutarch and Schiller. Vespers’ production at Covent Garden in December 1823 failed, in part because an ingénue was miscast as its heroine. An Edinburgh performance on 5 April 1824, promoted by Joanna Baillie and Sir Walter Scott and starring Harriet Siddons, fared better. .see full details
First edition of the first published work by successful poet Caroline Norton (1808-1877).more...
Norton had a significant literary pedigree; her mother was the novelist Caroline Henrietta Callender (1779–1851), and her paternal grandparents were the dramatist Richard Brinsley Sheridan and his first wife, the celebrated singer Elizabeth Linley. In 1827 Norton made what would prove to be an unhappy marriage to George Norton M.P., and ‘disliking and disliked by his family, threw herself into literary society’ (ODNB). The Sorrows of Rosalie was Norton’s first published work. Even by the accepted standards of cautionary tales, the eponymous heroine suffers particular hardship. Rosalie is persuaded by her lover to abandon her aged father, but the lover – a villain – deserts her soon after. With illegitimate child in tow she seeks her betrayer in London, but is forced to abandon the search and returns to her father’s house, only to find him dead. Maddened by grief and the needs of her starving child, Rosalie is driven to theft, whereupon she is imprisoned and, although she is ultimately acquitted, her child dies in prison. After much despair, she finds refuge in a remote part of the country where she devotes the remainder of her life to quiet contemplation. The work was widely reviewed; the Literary Gazette wrote, ‘there is nothing very intricate in the story of the Sorrows of Rosalie’ yet ‘these slender materials have been worked into a tale of intense and Crabbe-like pathos’. The Morning Post asserted that ‘simple, unaffected, and beautiful effusion will be perused and re-perused with still encreasing [sic] pleasure’. The New Monthly Magazine addressed the author’s gender: ‘The present little work is attributed to the pen of a lady. Were it not for the fair, we should have but little new poetry now-a-days. Mrs. Hemans, Miss Landon, Mrs. Howitt, Miss Browne, and others of the beau sex, have all a woman’s constancy for the Muse, and do not desert the worship because it does not happen, just at present, to be the ton’. Identifying the edition of The Sorrows of Rosalie is complicated. The British Library has two editions; the present imprint and one in a different state with alternative pagination, as well as a ‘fourth edition’, which appeared in the same year as the first.. Jackson recognises that the presence of the fourth suggests the presence of second and third states, but these have not been identified. The present work is identical to the British Library copy first edition..see full details
First edition, rare, of this book of forty poems for children.more...
The poems herein Include ‘Hymn’ by Amelia Opie (1769-1853), ‘The Angels’ Call’ by Felicia Hemans, ‘The Irish Maiden’s Song’ by Bernard Barton (1784-1849), ‘To My infant Boy’ by the Scottish novelist Leitch Ritchie (1800-1865), and ‘Youth’ by William Howitt, amongst others, as well as works anonymous on devotional themes. In her Preface, Hall explains that she was driven to choose largely devotional material, which ‘is selected (by the kind permission of friends) from various sources, for which [she begs] ‘most respectfully to thank all, as well as for some new contributions’. The first of the charming illustrations is the frontispiece vignette representation of ‘The Orphan’s Prayer’, after a poem in the volume by the Rev. Henry Stebbing..see full details
A diminutive volume of elegant verse by Liverpudlian poet and anti-slavery campaigner Jane Elizabeth Roscoe (1797-1853). Roscoe belonged to an active artistic and literary family. Her father William (1753-1831) was one of the founders of Liverpool’s first Society of Encouragement of the Arts, Painting and Design, which organized the first public exhibition of paintings held in any English town outside London. He was also an abolitionist, and later became one of nineteenth century’s foremost historians of Renaissance Italy. In keeping with her siblings, all of whom engaged in literary activities, Jane Elizabeth contributed to the two-volume Poems for Youth by a Family Circle (1820-1821) and was inspired by its modest success to print a small volume of her own verse, of which the present work is the second edition. As the contemporary annotations assert, Roscoe married Unitarian minister Francis Hornblower (1812-1853) in 1838, although the assertion here that she was 51 at the time of her marriage is incorrect. Roscoe remained actively involved with the anti-slavery movement, and would go on to contribute two sonnets to the Boston-based anti-slavery annual, The Liberty Bell. The present work is identical to first edition, but for the title-page. COPAC records just one copy of this edition, at the British Library. .see full details