The Blossoms of Helicon. by WOTY, William.

The Blossoms of Helicon. by WOTY, William.

~ The Blossoms of Helicon. London, Printed for the Author; and Sold by W. Flexney … 1763.

12mo (168 × 98 mm) in half-sheets, pp. [12], 162, [2]; some light finger-soiling, near-contemporary mottled calf, a little rubbed, spine gilt in compartments with red morocco lettering-piece, headcap chipped, marbled endpapers showing some surface wear, rear flyleaf sometime removed, early ink ownership inscription to front free endpaper verso (‘Wm. Armroid his Book’).

First edition. William Woty (c.1732–1791) was a jobbing poet and literary editor with friends in high places: ‘Samuel Johnson, James Boswell, Tobias Smollett, and David Garrick are listed among the names of the many subscribers to [his] first collections, and Woty apparently had a strong interest in the London theatre … Later Woty published The Stage: a Poetical Epistle to a Friend (1780) and two short dramatic pieces: The Country Gentlemen, or, The Choice Spirits (1786) and The Ambitious Widow: a Comic Entertainment (1789)’ (Oxford DNB).

The subscribers’ lists here includes C. Churchill (10 copies; presumably the poet Charles Churchill), William Dodd, ‘the Macaroni Parson’ for whom Johnson famously tried to win a reprieve, John Wilkes (10 copies), and David Garrick.

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