BOURNE, Vincent. ~ Miscellaneous Poems: consisting of Originals and Translations. London: Printed for W. Ginger, in College-Street, Westminster: and sold by J. Dodsley... and E. Johnson... 1772.
4to (258 × 200 mm), pp. xvi, 352, typographical ornaments; title very slightly spotted, otherwise very clean and crisp throughout; contemporary polished calf, spine gilt, red morocco label; neat tissue repair to upper joint; bookplate of Sir John Trollope, Bart; a fine copy.
Vincent Bourne ‘was one of the most popular English Latin poets of the eighteenth century’ (Oxford DNB). The first collection of his poems appeared in 1734, and there were several lifetime editions. This posthumous collection (Bourne died in 1747) is especially full, and ESTC suggests that ‘many poems’ are falsely attributed. Educated at Westminster School and later an usher (or tutor) there, composition in Latin was Bourne’s lifelong enthusiasm. William Cowper, his pupil, commented ‘he seemed determined, as he was the best, so to be the last, Latin poet of the Westminster line,’ noting also that he was rather less successful as a teacher.
His best poems are intimate portraits of Westminster life. Some are devoted to the spirit of place, notably ‘Pons Westmomasteriensis’ (on Westminster Bridge), others to friends and colleagues, such as ‘Ad Davidem Cook’, an affectionate reminiscence of a Westminster nightwatchman and his hendecasyllables on William Hogarth.
This copy bears the bookplate of Sir John Trollope, great-grandfather of the novelist. Jackson, p. 14.