COOKE, William. ~ Poetical Essays on several Occasions. By the Reverend William Cooke, A.M. Fellow of New College in Oxford, Master of the Free Grammar School at Thame in Oxfordshire, and Chaplain to the Most Honourable the Marquess of Tweeddale. London: Printed for S. Smith. 1774.
4to (225 × 178 mm), pp. vii, , 106, , with terminal blank leaf, subscribers’ list; slight loss to upper forecorner of pp. vii and [viii] from careless opening, no loss of text; preserved in modern marbled boards.
First edition (a second edition appeared the following year). Among the poems, of which a good number are addressed to members of the Hay family of Tweeddale, are ‘Thoughts on Stonehenge’ and ‘The Cuckow and the Nightingale’ (modernized from Chaucer). ‘Stanzas written at Godstowe Nunner Near Oxford’ recall the tragic Rosamund, mistress of Henry II, a subject which, inspired another poet, John Brand, to publish On illicit love. Written among the ruins of Godstow nunnery, near Oxford the following year. Jackson, p. 32; ESTC: BL, Bodley and Longleat, McMaster, Newberry, Rice, UCLA and Toronto.