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  • Semiramis, a Tragedy: as it is acted at the Theatre Royal in Drury-Lane... by AYSCOUGH, George Edward, Captain. AYSCOUGH, George Edward, Captain. ~ Semiramis, a Tragedy: as it is acted at the Theatre Royal in Drury-Lane... London: Printed for J. Dodsley... 1776.
    First edition of the soldier-author Ayscough’s version of Voltaire’s tragedy on the life of the Assyrian queen Shammuramat. ‘In December 1776 Ayscough’s version of Voltaire's… (more)

    First edition of the soldier-author Ayscough’s version of Voltaire’s tragedy on the life of the Assyrian queen Shammuramat. ‘In December 1776 Ayscough’s version of Voltaire's tragedy Sémiramis (1748) was staged at Drury Lane. The play, dedicated to Ayscough's brother-in-law Sir James Cockburn and published by J. Dodsley, incorporated an epilogue by Richard Sheridan. The editor of the London Review dismissed the piece as ‘not worth quarrelling about’... Nevertheless, Ayscough’s tragedy was performed eleven times, earning the author three crowded benefit nights. It appears that Ayscough recruited his brother officers to attend the first night of the play and he addressed them directly in his prologue, promising them ‘(this great bus'ness ended) / He'll gladly re-assume the Sash once more’. Ayscough died on 14 October 1779’ (Oxford DNB). This copy is from the Allardyce Nicoll collection, with a sheet bearing his notes.

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  • Miscellaneous Poems. The Illustrious Friends; Address to Music and Poesy, &c.... by ASHBY, Samuel. ASHBY, Samuel. ~ Miscellaneous Poems. The Illustrious Friends; Address to Music and Poesy, &c.... London: Printed for W. Miller... 1794.
    Sole edition of this collection by a Bungay Quaker poet. By the far the longest poem is the first, ‘The Illustrious Friends’, a violent polemic… (more)

    Sole edition of this collection by a Bungay Quaker poet. By the far the longest poem is the first, ‘The Illustrious Friends’, a violent polemic directed against Thomas Paine and the principles of the Rights of Man. After some 640 lines describing the hell to which the nation would be brought by them, he concludes:

    ‘Such our Republic will possess,
    To plague, to torture, and oppress;
    To force our arbitrary sway,
    And make our subject Fiends obey:
    For such is Paine’s and Satan’s plan,
    The practice of the Rights of Man.’

    The subscribers are predominantly East Anglian. This appears to have been Ashby’s only substantial collection, with COPAC recording just one other publication bearing his name, Ode on the Surrender of Paris, to the Allies; July 3d. 1815 (Bungay printed, apparently by the author himself) and another suppositious title, Song of “Old Bungay”: as sung at the Theatre, by Mr. Fisher (Bungay, c. 1816). The British Book Trade Index records him as ‘Printer, Bookseller, Stationer, Publisher’ in 1830. Not in Jackson; ESTC: BL, Bodley, Cambridge and Suffolk Record Office; Philosophical Society, Princeton, Minnesota, Yale and National Library of Australia.

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  • The Satires... by ARIOSTO, Lodovico. ARIOSTO, Lodovico. ~ The Satires... London: Printed for A. Millar... 1759.
    First edition of this translation, partly by Temple Henry Croker, a native of Cork who spent most of his life in England. His name appears… (more)

    First edition of this translation, partly by Temple Henry Croker, a native of Cork who spent most of his life in England. His name appears at the end of the life of Ariosto. The ‘Advertisement’ refers to ‘the Translators’, and Croker attributes all but two of the translations to one Reverend Mr. H--rt-n, while admitting responsibility for ‘the second and last’.

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  • Poems on various Subjects... by ANDERSON, Robert. ANDERSON, Robert. ~ Poems on various Subjects... Carlisle: Printed by J. Mitchell, for the author, and sold by W. Clarke, New Bond-Street, London. 1798.
    Sole edition of the Carlisle poet’s first collection (his dialect collection Ballads in the Cumberland Dialect followed in 1805). After a brief Quaker education in… (more)

    Sole edition of the Carlisle poet’s first collection (his dialect collection Ballads in the Cumberland Dialect followed in 1805). After a brief Quaker education in his home town, Anderson worked as a calico printer and as apprentice to a pattern drawer, a trade which took him to London, where he is said to have been inspired by songs heard at Vauxhall Gardens (Oxford DNB).

    This first collection was not widely noticed (in comparison with the Ballads), but the Monthly Visitor, and Pocket Companion of October 1799 devoted a few lines to it. ‘This poet is self-educated, and therefore his productions must not be severely scrutinized... We, however, are pleased with many parts of this little volume, and can recommend it to our readers.’ Jackson, p. 229; Johnson, Provincial Poetry 21; ESTC lists British copies at the British Library and Bodley only, and 8 copies in the US.

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  • Envy, a Poem, addressed to Mrs. Miller, at Batheaston Villa. by (ANSTEY, Christopher). (ANSTEY, Christopher). ~ Envy, a Poem, addressed to Mrs. Miller, at Batheaston Villa. London: Printed for J. Dodsley... [ 1778.]
    [bound with:] [drop-head title:] Winter Amusements, an Ode read at Lady Miller’s Assembly, December 3d, 1778, pp. 8. Sole edition, probably issued with ‘Envy’. Jackson,… (more)

    [bound with:] [drop-head title:] Winter Amusements, an Ode read at Lady Miller’s Assembly, December 3d, 1778, pp. 8. Sole edition, probably issued with ‘Envy’. Jackson, p. 67.

    [and:] An Election Ball, in poetical letters from Mr. Inkle, at Bath, to his wife at Glocester. The fourth edition... London: Printed for J. Dodsley, 1779, pp. 64, including engraved frontispiece, engraved title vignette; not in Jackson.

    [and:] Ad C. W. Bampfylde, arm: epistola poetica familiaris, in qua continentur tabuae quinque ab eo excogitaae, quae personas repraesentat poematum cuiusdam anglicani, cui titulis An Election Ball. Auctore C. Anstey, arm: Bath: impensis auctoris excudebat S. Hazard: prostant venales apud S. Hazard, & W. Hibbart. J. Dodsley, J. Wilkie, [London] Fletcher & Hodson, [Cambridge] & J. Fletcher, [Oxford], 1776, First edition, pp. 42; engraved ornament (lyre & easel) to title, 4 illustrations (after Bampfylde) to text (one with imprint partially added in minute contemporary manuscript). First edition. Jackson, p. 43.

    [and:] [GRAY, Thomas., Christopher ANSTEY, translator.] Elegia script in Coemeerio Rustico... Latinè reddita. Editio nova prioribus emendatior. London: Prostant venales apud J. Dodsley..., 1778, pp. [4], 15, [1], engraved vignette to title. Not in Jackson.

    [and:] A Pindaric Epistle, addressed to Lord Buckhorse. First printed in the Year 1766. A new edition... London: Printed for J. Dodsley, 1779, pp. [3]-67, [1], without half-title, engraved portrait vignette to title. This edition not in Jackson.

    [and:] On the much lamented death of the Marquis of Tavistock... The Fifth Edition. London: Printed for J. Dodsley, 1778, pp. 7, [1].

    [and:] Speculation; or a defence of mankind: a Poem. London: Printed for the author, and sold by J. Dodsley, 1780, pp. [2], 52, [2]. First edition. Jackson, p. 83.

    8 works bound together, 4to (232 × 171 mm) mostly in half-sheets; contemporary sprinkled calf, spine ruled in gilt, red morocco label; engraved bookplate of the Earls of Granard; rubbed, with some insect damage, joints starting, spine chipped at head but excellent copies in a good contemporary binding.

    ‘A few years after the publication of the New Bath Guide in 1766, Christopher Anstey came into contact with Captain and Mrs. Miller and became a member of the famous “poetical coterie” at Batheaston’ (Munby). Horace Walpole, describing their activities in a letter of January 5th 1775, said that they held ‘a Parnassus fair every Thursday, [and] give out rhymes and themes and all the flux of quality at Bath contend for the prizes.’ Much of this collection relates to these gatherings.

    Envy was written for one of the Batheaston Vase Competitions, though was completed too late for submission. It has added to it Winter Amusements, an Ode, which is separately paginated and is usually listed as a separate work. A Dodsley advertisement at the end of this collection, however, makes clear that copies of Envy could be bought with the addition of Winter Amusements and Dodsley probably sold off remaining copies of Winter Amusements with Envy.

    The fourth edition of An Election Ball is scarce, with ESTC locating 4 copies (all in the US, none in the UK), and it is apparently a straightforward reprint of the third edition. It does not contain the illustrations by Bampfylde, which only appeared in the fifth edition, having first appeared in the Latin Epistola poetica familiaris composed by Anstey and addressed to Bampfylde, being the next bound item in this collection.

    Thomas Gray’s Elegy in Latin is the second edition of Anstey’s translation the first having appeared at Cambridge in 1762, his first publication. A Pindaric Epistle, a late edition, has a lengthy ‘Appendix’ consisting of a one act play ‘containing the Author’s Conversation with his Bookseller, &c. &c.’ The final advertisement to Speculation is frequently wanting. Munby, Book Collector’s Quarterly, 16, pp. 22-3.

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  • [ANSTEY, Christopher]. ~ An Election Ball, in poetical Letters from Mr. Inkle, at Bath, to his wife at Glocester: with a poetical Address to John Miller, Esq.... The Second Edition, with considerable Additions. By the Author of the New Bath Guide. Bath: Printed for the author, by S. Hazard,... and sold by Dodsley, and Wilkie, London; Fletcher and Hodson, at Cambridge; and by S. Hazard, and all the other booksellers at Bath. 1776.
    Second edition, with the addition of the famous plate, facing p. 36, depicting the heroine, Madge Inkle preparing her extravagant head-dress for the ball, with… (more)

    Second edition, with the addition of the famous plate, facing p. 36, depicting the heroine, Madge Inkle preparing her extravagant head-dress for the ball, with feathers plucked from a live cockerel. Jackson, p. 44.

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  • Poetical Epistles to the Author of the New Bath Guide, from a genteel Family in ——shire by (ANSTEY, Christopher). (ANSTEY, Christopher). ~ Poetical Epistles to the Author of the New Bath Guide, from a genteel Family in ——shire London: Printed by T. and J.W. Pasham... for T. & J. Merrill, in Cambridge, J. Dodsley... J. Johnson & Co.... B. White... J. Robson... London. 1767.
    Sole edition of this anonymous New Bath Guide spin-off consisting of four witty letters in poetic form purporting to be by members of one family… (more)

    Sole edition of this anonymous New Bath Guide spin-off consisting of four witty letters in poetic form purporting to be by members of one family (surnamed ‘W—P—E’), in imitation of Anstey and his Blunderhead family. It concludes with a good-humoured hunting invitation to Anstey. It was noted by both the Critical and Monthly Reviews, the former commending the author as ‘no despicable poet’.

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  • An Ode to the Country Gentlemen of England,... by AKENSIDE, Mark. AKENSIDE, Mark. ~ An Ode to the Country Gentlemen of England,... London: Printed for R. and J. Dodsley... and sold by M. Cooper... 1758.
    First edition in book form. Published against a backdrop of the Seven Years’ War, Akenside’s address to the country gentlemen of England was intended to… (more)

    First edition in book form. Published against a backdrop of the Seven Years’ War, Akenside’s address to the country gentlemen of England was intended to rouse them and their tenants to the defence of their country. Deploring the tendency for British interests to be left to mercenary troops in the pay of the British Army (’slavish ruffians hir’d for their command’), Akenside appeals to the historic sensibilities of the gentry of ‘heedless Albion.’

    The poem was also printed in full in the London magazine, or, Gentleman's Monthly Intelligencer, of April 1758 and at least one provincial journal, the Newcastle General Magazine, in the same month. Rothschild 25.

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