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A Very Rare Incunabule, Vitae Pontificum, Ist Edition, of 1479, By Bartolomaeus Platina

Pope Sixtus IVth's Appointed Vatican Librarian. This remarkable tome is over 525 years old. When Bartolomeo Sacchi ('Platina', 1421-1481) wrote this Vitae pontificum (Lives of the Popes) and personally presented it to Pope Sixtus IV in 1475, he surely could not have imagined how influential it would become over the centuries. His was the first papal history, the lives of the popes from the time of Jesus Christ, to the reign of Sixtus IV, composed as a humanist Latin narrative and, as such, marked a distinct breakthrough in relation to the Liber pontificalis, the standard medieval chronicle of the papacy. Whatever Platina's intentions for the book that was published in 1479, it soon came to be regarded as the official history of the Roman pontiffs, an icon of the earliest printing. Formerly from the library of the renown Abolishionist William Roscoe, sold by him at auction in 1816 for ?1.13/-, due to the financial difficulties of his banking house, and acquired by order of the Library Committee of the City of Bath Reference Library. This book was likely commissioned due to the influences of Pope Sixtus IV [Francesco della Rovere] upon his librarian, it's author, Bartolomaeus Platina. We show in the gallery a painting of Pope Sixtus appointing Platina as the official Vatican Librarian. An Incunable is a most rare book, pamphlet, or broadside (such as the Almanach cracoviense ad annum 1474) that was printed?not handwritten?before the year 1501 in Europe. They are the earliest form of printed books. Incunabula include the Gutenberg Bible of 1455, probably the most valuable book in the world. This is a First Edition of Bartholomaeus Platina's great history of the lives of the Popes, the first systematic papal history, not only to create the first detailed history of the Popes but also to villify his mortal enemy Pope Paul IInd Pietro Barbo. This book was created in the era of the great Rennaiscance, in the time of the notorious Borgias and in the year of the notorious Pazzi conspiracy, which was a plot by members of the Pazzi family and others to displace the de' Medici family as rulers of Renaissance Florence. It was printed at the time that Leonado De Vinci drew the hanging of a Pazzi conspiritor Bernardo di Bandino Baroncelli. On 26 April 1478 there was an attempt to assassinate Lorenzo de' Medici and his brother Giuliano de' Medici. Lorenzo was wounded but survived; Giuliano was killed. The failure of the plot served to strengthen the position of the de' Medici. The Pazzi were banished from Florence. During the time the Platina served as the first librarian at the Vatican under its modern founder, Sixtus IV. Platina started his career as a soldier employed by condottieri, before gaining long-term patronage from the Gonzagas, including the young cardinal Francesco, for whom he wrote a family history. He studied under the Byzantine humanist philosopher John Argyropulos in Florence, where he frequented other fellow humanists, as well as members of the ruling Medici family.

Around 1462 he moved with Francesco Gonzaga to Rome, where he purchased a post as a papal writer under the humanist Pius II (Enea Silvio Piccolomini) and became a member of the pagan-influenced Roman Academy founded by Pomponio Leto. Close acquaintance with the renowned chef Maestro Martino in Rome seems to have provided inspiration for a theoretical treatise on Italian gastronomy entitled De honesta voluptate et valetudine ("On honourable pleasure and health"), which achieved considerable popularity and has the distinction of being considered the first printed cookbook.

Platina's papal employment was abruptly curtailed on the arrival of an anti-humanist pope, Paul II (Pietro Barbo), who had the rebellious Platina locked up in Castel Sant'Angelo during the winter of 1464-65 as a punishment for his remonstrations. In 1468 he was again confined in Castel Sant'Angelo for a further year, where he was interrogated under torture, following accusations of an alleged pagan conspiracy by members of Pomponio's Roman academy involving plans to assassinate the pope.

Platina's fortunes were revived by the return to power of the strongly pro-humanist pope, Sixtus IV (Francesco della Rovere), who in 1475 made him Vatican librarian?an appointment which was depicted in a famous fresco by Melozzo da Forl?. He was granted the post after writing an innovative and influential history of the lives of the popes that gives ample space to Roman history and pagan themes, and concludes by vilifying Platina's nemesis, Paul Iia paragraph from Platina's Vit? Pontificum first gave rise to the legend of the excommunication of Halley's comet by Pope Callixtus III,
Vit? Pontificum ("Lives of the Popes", 1479) "Incunable" is the anglicised singular form of "incunabula", Latin for "swaddling clothes" or "cradle", which can refer to "the earliest stages or first traces in the development of anything." A former term for "incunable" is "fifteener", referring to the 15th century. Vitae pontificum, FIRST EDITION, 239 leaves (of 240, lacking first leaf), 39 lines, roman (and a little Greek) letter, capital spaces with guide letters, a few early marginal ink annotations, tears repaired to 2 leaves, small worm trace in upper margin of approximately 30 leaves (touching letters on approximately 20), inner margins of final leaves strengthened at gutter margins and a few other small paper repairs, gnawing to some fore-corners, blindstamp on approximately 6 leaves, late seventeenth/early eighteenth century red morocco gilt, sides panelled with corner, side and central decorations, spine gilt-tooled (including title and publication date) in 7 compartments within raised bands, rebacked preserving most of original spine. [Venice], Johannes de Colonia and Johannes Manthen, 11 June 1479. William Roscoe's copy of the first editon of Platina's history of the Popes.

Provenance: William Roscoe (1753-1832), historian and author of Lorenzo de Medici (1796) and The Life of Pope Leo X (1805), with a 10-line pencil note in his hand, above which an ink note reads "Notes by Wm. Roscoe vide infra. Coll. By him". One of this books former owners was the renown William Roscoe (8 March 1753 ? 30 June 1831). He was an English historian, leading abolitionist, art collector, M.P. Lawyer, banker, botanist and miscellaneous writer, perhaps best known today as an early abolitionist. 11.25 inches x 7.5inches x 2.25 inches.

Code: 20006

4950.00 GBP


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The Indian Mutiny of 1857 by Colonel G.B. Malleson

Full leather binding with stunning blue marble paper fronts. The Grange Folkstone gilt crest to front cover. Signs of very light use and wear, but overall excellent. Published by Seeley & Co, Great Russel st. London 1901

Contemporary review from the Athenaeum: It only be remarked that Colonel Malleson wields his pen with so much skill that while giving a realistic account of all important operations, passing over no really noteworthy act of talent or heroism, and acutely criticising everything which demands criticism, he abstains from overlaying his narrative with details which would have increased the bulk of his book beyond all reason. Another characteristic of Colonel Malleson is that he never hesitates to condemn conduct of which he disapproves or to draw attention to errors which he conceives were committed, whatever the rank or position of those who are the objects of his criticism. The result is that many of the actors in the drama will find their laurels somewhat injured, while others, who from official prejudice have not yet received full credit for their exploits, obtain from the author due praise for their services. The rewards given for the Mutiny were liberal, but it is distressing to find that some of them were undeserved, while on the other hand, many able and gallant men have received no recognition at all There are many highly-placed officials whose fame is sadly tarnished by the frank, truthful criticisms of the fearless, uncompromising author of the book before us. 7.75 inches by 5.5 inches x 1.5 inches

Code: 23814

110.00 GBP


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A Very Good Example of The Adolf Hitler Biography Album Book 1936

A most intriguing insight into the thinking and psychology of the German people during the pre-WW2 1930's. This is an excellent original example of the now rarely seen Third Reich German book 'ADOLF HITLER' - Bilder aus dem Leben des Fuhrers (Adolf Hitler - Pictures of the Life of the Fuhrer) as published in 1936 by Cigaretten-Bilderdienst in Altona-Bahrenfeld, Germany. Not a rare book at the time but very rare to get in such nice condition today. Made by the German so-called cigarette card manufacturers that were popular all over the world from the 1900s until after WWII. However unlike the British versions that had a small card in every cigarette packet, usually of benign subjects, such as pictures of sporting heroes [cricket and football] or motor cars, aeroplanes and the like, the German type could be overtly political, often based around Hitler’s socialist ideology and his view on Germanic history, and its Arian roots, and were also of a much larger size, and thus had to be sent for from vouchers in the cigarettes packet. The family would purchase the empty album and send in coupons from cigarette packages for packets of photographs, which would then be mounted into the album. This is one of the most impressive made during the 1930s in Germany and consists of beautifully clear and sharp black/white and colour images showing the life of Adolf Hitler, taken by Heinrich Hoffmann, Hitler's personal photographer and Eva Braun's former employer. There are also commentaries written by some of the leaders of the new Reich. This is a very clean, bright, and immaculate example and dates from the mid 1930s. It's a great collector reference. Most of these books were destroyed within Germany at the surrender in 1945. This Nazi book has an excellent historical text and photo captions that cover the period of Hitler’s life from his birth in Braunau am Inn through his service in World War I, his excellent watercolor paintings, the battles of the early days of the NSDAP, the success of the Nazi Party in German elections and Hitler’s eventual appointment as Reichskanzler or Chancellor of Germany. The album is complete with no pages missing or with any other damage, the size is 9-1/2 x 12-1/2 inches, 135 heavy material pages with, we believe, 256 photo-like pictures (many of them full or half page size!) pasted into the text! There are no pictures missing and none of them is damaged. Some of the album's content: 1. Foreword by Dr. Joseph Goebbels 2. Adolf Hitler traveling 3. Adolf Hitler giving speeches 4. Adolf Hitler and the "Deutsche Arbeitsfront" (D.A.F.) 5. Adolf Hitler and the German Arts 6. The new building projects of Adolf and his architect Albert Speer 7. Adolf Hitler and his favourite project: the Reichsautobahn 8. Adolf Hitler and the strong new Wehrmacht 9. Adolf Hitler and the Hitler Youth (HJ or Hitlerjugend) 10. Adolf Hitler on the Obersalzberg 11. Adolf Hitler and his SS Leibstandarte 12. Adolf Hitler and the National Socialist Movement 13. Water color paintings from the early Adolf Hitler 14. etc., etc., etc? One double page leaf is loose but otherwise in good sound condition.

Code: 22198

295.00 GBP


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James Bond Ist Edition "You Only Live Twice" Ist Impression

Jonathan Cape, London, 1964. the 2th Bond book. Black Cloth with Japanese kanji . Condition: Fine. Dust Jacket Condition:Good. First Edition. A first edition/first Impression. Throughout a jolly nice copy. "When Ernst Stavro Blofeld blasted into eternity the girl whom James Bond had married only hours before, the heart, the zest for life, went out of Bond" (from the dust-jacket). Basis for the James Bond movie with Sean Connery and Karin Dor as Bond-Girl Helga Brandt. This film is the first Bond movie to deviate from the source material. Other than the Japanese setting, and several characters, the two stories are very different.
You Only Live Twice
Cinema poster showing Sean Connery as James Bond sitting in a pool of water and being attended to by eight black-haired Japanese women
British cinema poster for You Only Live Twice, designed and illustrated by Robert McGinnis and Frank McCarthy
Directed by Lewis Gilbert
Produced by Albert R. Broccoli
Harry Saltzman

Distributed by United Artists
Release date
12 June 1967 (London, premiere)
You Only Live Twice is a 1967 British spy film and the fifth in the James Bond series produced by Eon Productions, starring Sean Connery as the fictional MI6 agent James Bond. The film's screenplay was written by Roald Dahl, and loosely based on Ian Fleming's 1964 novel of the same name. It is the first James Bond film to discard most of Fleming's plot, using only a few characters and locations from the book as the background for an entirely new story.

In the film, Bond is dispatched to Japan after American and Soviet manned spacecraft disappear mysteriously in orbit. With each nation blaming the other amidst the Cold War, Bond travels secretly to a remote Japanese island to find the perpetrators and comes face to face with Ernst Stavro Blofeld, the head of SPECTRE. The film reveals the appearance of Blofeld, who was previously a partially unseen character. SPECTRE is working for the government of an unnamed Asian power, implied to be the People's Republic of China, to provoke war between the superpowers.

During the filming in Japan, it was announced that Sean Connery would retire from the role of Bond, but after a hiatus, he returned in 1971's Diamonds Are Forever and later 1983's non-Eon Bond film Never Say Never Again. You Only Live Twice is the first Bond film to be directed by Lewis Gilbert, who later directed the 1977 film The Spy Who Loved Me and the 1979 film Moonraker, both starring Roger Moore.

You Only Live Twice was a great success, receiving positive reviews and grossing over $111 million in worldwide box office.

Code: 21780

975.00 GBP


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1st Edition James Bond, Octopussy & The Living Daylights, by Ian Fleming

1st Edition, 1st Impression second issue jacket. Published by Jonathan Cape, 1966. Octopussy and The Living Daylights (sometimes published as Octopussy) is the fourteenth and final James Bond book written by Ian Fleming in the Bond series. The book is a collection of short stories published posthumously in the United Kingdom by Jonathan Cape on 23 June 1966.

The book originally contained just two stories, "Octopussy" and "The Living Daylights", with subsequent editions also carrying firstly "The Property of a Lady" and then "007 in New York". The stories were first published in different publications, with "Octopussy" first serialised in the Daily Express in October 1965. "The Living Daylights" had first appeared in The Sunday Times on 4 February 1962; "The Property of a Lady" was published in November 1963 in a Sotheby's publication, The Ivory Hammer, whilst "007 in New York" first appeared in the New York Herald Tribune in October 1963.

The two original stories, "Octopussy" and "The Living Daylights", were both adapted for publication in comic strip format in the Daily Express in 1966?1967. Elements from the stories have also been used in the Eon Productions Bond films. The first, Octopussy, starring Roger Moore as James Bond, was released in 1983 as the thirteenth film in the series and provided the back story for the film Octopussy's family, while "The Property of a Lady" was more closely adapted for an auction sequence in the film. The Living Daylights, released in 1987, was the fifteenth Bond film produced by Eon and starred Timothy Dalton in his first appearance as Bond.On the morning of 12 August 1964, Fleming died of a heart attack; eight months later, The Man with the Golden Gun was published.[8] The rights to Fleming's works were held by Glidrose Productions (now Ian Fleming Publications) and it was decided by the company that two short stories, "Octopussy" and "The Living Daylights", would be published in 1966The story "Octopussy" was written in early 1962 at Fleming's Goldeneye estate in Jamaica. The story is told in the manner of "Quantum of Solace", with Bond as catalyst for story told in flashback, rather than as a main character for action. Fleming originally titled "The Living Daylights" as "Trigger Finger", although when it first appeared, in The Sunday Times colour supplement of 4 February 1962, it was under the title of "Berlin Escape". It was also published in the June 1962 issue of the American magazine Argosy under the same name
As with his previous novels, Fleming used events from his past as elements in his novel. Whilst at Kitzb?hel in the 1930s, Fleming's car, a Standard Tourer, had been struck by a train at a level crossing and he had been dragged fifty yards down the track. From that time on he had associated trains with death, which led to their use as a plot device not just in The Man with the Golden Gun, but also in Diamonds Are Forever and From Russia, with Love. To show just how much all things original Bond are appreciated in the world of collectors the Walther pistol used by Connery in the poster of From Russia With Love, in 1963, and also drawn in the man With The Golden Gun poster [as shown here] an air pistol, .177 (4.5mm) Walther 'LP MOD.53' Air Pistol, Serial No. 054159, was sold by Christies in 2010 with an estimate of ?15,000 to ?20,000 for an incredible ?277,000. [We dropped out of the bidding at ?22,000] Incredible in that it was never used in any film, was an air pistol not a real automatic, and only used in promotional posters. It was 'said' to have been used by accident in fact as they couldn't find a correct Walther.. A full set of 1st edition Ian Fleming's 14 James Bond novels published by Jonathan Cape between 1953-1966 could now cost in the region of ?90,000. Comprising: Casino Royale, Live and Let Die, Moonraker, Diamonds are Forever, From Russia with Love, Dr No, Goldfinger, For Your Eyes Only, Thunderball, The Spy Who Loved Me, On Her Majesty's Secret Service, You Only Live Twice, The Man with the Golden Gun and Octopussy and the Living Daylights.

Code: 20813

795.00 GBP


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Aur.Theodosii Macrobii, v. cl. & inlustris, Opera Published London 1694

by Ambrosius Aurelius Theodosius Macrobius, Johannes Isacius Pontanus, Johannes van Meurs, Jacobus Gronovius. First printing in England. Published by Dring and Harper of Fleet St. Imprimateur Rob. Ridgely, Feb 25, 169 1/2. 1694 Editio Novissima, Cum Indice Rerum & Vocum Locupletissimo. Calf leather, spine with four raised bands.Macrobius, ca. 400, is considered to be one of the last pagan Roman authors. His most important work is the Saturnalia, an account of a long dicussion held during a symposium on the occasion of the Saturnalia. The subjects discussed are grammar, philology, mythology, history. Macrobius also produced a commentary on the Somnium Scipionis of Cicero. The work of this late antique writer is important because he rescued opinions and passages from works that have been lost. The Dutch classical scholar Johannes Isaac Pontanus, 1571-1639, was born at sea (hence his name), when his parents were on their way to Denmark. There he was for some time a helper of Tycho Brahe (NNBW I,1417). In 1606 he became professor of Mathematics at the University of Harderwijk. His edition of Macrobius, which included also notes of the Dutch scholar Johannes Meursius, dates from 1597, a second edition from 1628. § This edition of 1670 was produced by the young Dutch scholar Jacobus Gronovius, 1645-1716, after having finished his studies at the University of Leiden under his father Johannes Fredericus Gronovius, 1611-1671, who was professor of Greek and History from 1658, and from 1665 librarian of the University Library of Leiden. It was Jacobus' first important scholarly feat. In the preface Gronovius tells us that his father allowed him to inspect and cleanse ancient manuscripts, and how he conceived the plan to collate two rather old Macrobius manuscripts that were in a bad shape. ('duorum (.) MStorum situ & squalore horrentium, satis tamen antiquam manum ostendentium')Later, in 1679, Jacobus succeeded his father as professor of History and Greek)

Code: 23302

875.00 GBP


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Zeppelin-Weltfahrten Picture Card Book

A fascinating piece of German aeronautical history ephemera. rom the first airship in 1899 to the trips of the LZ 127 Graf Zeppelin. 264 black and white images.

The fascination of the zeppelins, the silvery shimmering, sedate floating kings of the sky, has remained unbroken to this day. In the heyday of the Zeppelin era, during the 20s and 30s, the zeppelins opened up almost every continent on earth for well-heeled travelers. This is impressively demonstrated by this book published in 1932, into which extremely interesting photos on the subject of the Zeppelin could be glued.
The book which provides information about the technology and development of the zeppelins ... A picture album made with collectable photographs sold in the 1930's. 24cm x 34cm I card lacking.

Code: 16729

130.00 GBP


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History of United Netherlands from the Death of William the Silent

To the twelve years truce - 1609. by John Lothrop Motley. New Edition with portraits. 4 volumes, all in fine bindings with clean and polished calf in red, two gilted leather title labels on the spines of each, 5 raised bands. Marble cover and interior pages. Marbled edges. Published 1875/6 by John Murray Albemarle St. London. Motley, who served as United States ambassador to Austria during the Civil War and later as ambassador to Great Britain, said of his affinity for the Netherlands: "I had not first made up my mind to write a history and then cast about to take up a subject. My subject had taken me up, drawn me on, and absorbed me into itself." Although he spent much of his life abroad, Motley was a member of the Boston literary circle that included Hawthorne, Lowell, Longfellow, and Motley's future biographer, Oliver Wendell Holmes. William I, Prince of Orange (24 April 1533 ? 10 July 1584), also known as William the Silent or William the Taciturn (translated from Dutch: Willem de Zwijger), or more commonly known as William of Orange, was the main leader of the Dutch Revolt against the Spanish Habsburgs that set off the Eighty Years' War (1568?1648) and resulted in the formal independence of the United Provinces in 1581. He was born in the House of Nassau as Count of Nassau-Dillenburg. He became Prince of Orange in 1544 and is thereby the founder of the branch House of Orange-Nassau and the ancestor of the monarchy of the Netherlands. Within the Netherlands he is also known as Father of the Fatherland (Dutch: Vader des Vaderlands).

A wealthy nobleman, William originally served the Habsburgs as a member of the court of Margaret of Parma, governor of the Spanish Netherlands. Unhappy with the centralisation of political power away from the local estates and with the Spanish persecution of Dutch Protestants, William joined the Dutch uprising and turned against his former masters. The most influential and politically capable of the rebels, he led the Dutch to several successes in the fight against the Spanish. Declared an outlaw by the Spanish king in 1580, he was assassinated by Balthasar G?rard (also written as "Gerardts") in Delft in 1584. A fine set, very collectable and much sought by collectors. Philip II of Spain berating William the Silent Prince of Orange by Cornelis Kruseman.

Code: 22358

675.00 GBP


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1st Edition The Personal History of David Copperfield by Charles Dickens Ist Impression binding by Bayntun-Riviere

David Copperfield was Dickens' most autobiographical novel. This is only the third version bound by Baytun-Rivière we have seen or had in 20 years. This is an absolute beauty and would make a fabulous Christmas gift for a dear loved one. A classic and charming story by the maestro of Victorian fiction. The Personal History of David Copperfield, 1850, Bradbury and Evans, first edition, first issue in book form (Smith 9), forty plates as called for, top page edges gilt, full morocco by Bayntun-Riviere. Engraved vignette title page (dated) is present. With Illustrations by H.K. Browne. True first issue with error points, including "screamed" for "screwed" on page 132 line 20 (usually lacking). Chapter XXVII is on page 282 rather than page 283 as listed in the table of contents; page 16: line 1 and page 225: line 22 both read "recal" rather than "recall"; Printed and first read before the Crimean War in Russia, and the 'Charge of the Light Brigade' that became infamous in British military history. Original printing imperfections and flaws are detailed in Walter E. Smith and his wonderful work 'Charles Dickens in the Original Cloth'. Smith's comprehensive bibliography of each of Dickens's works enabled all to describe the bindings in detail; identifying them as original and therefore extremely sought after by discerning Dickens enthusiasts and general bibliophiles alike. David Copperfield is the eighth novel by Charles Dickens. The novel's full title is The Personal History, Adventures, Experience and Observation of David Copperfield the Younger of Blunderstone Rookery (Which He Never Meant to Publish on Any Account).[note 1] It was first published as a serial in 1849?50, and as a book in 1850. Many elements of the novel follow events in Dickens's own life, and it is often considered as his veiled autobiography. It was Dickens' favourite among his own novels. In the preface to the 1867 edition, Dickens wrote, "like many fond parents, I have in my heart of hearts a favourite child. And his name is David Copperfield." The story follows the life of David Copperfield from childhood to maturity. David was born in Blunderstone, Suffolk, England, six months after the death of his father. David spends his early years in relative happiness with his loving, childish mother and their kindly housekeeper, Peggotty. When he is seven years old his mother marries Edward Murdstone. During the marriage, partly to get him out of the way and partly because he strongly objects to the whole proceeding, David is sent to lodge with Peggotty's family in Yarmouth. Her brother, fisherman Mr. Peggotty, lives in a house built in an upturned boat on the beach, with his adopted relatives Emily and Ham, and an elderly widow, Mrs. Gummidge. "Little Em'ly" is somewhat spoilt by her fond foster father, and David is in love with her. On his return, David is given good reason to dislike his stepfather and has similar feelings for Murdstone's sister Jane, who moves into the house soon afterwards. Between them they tyrannise his poor mother, making her and David's lives miserable, and when, in consequence, David falls behind in his studies, Murdstone attempts to thrash him ? partly to further pain his mother. David bites him and soon afterwards is sent away to a boarding school, Salem House, under a ruthless headmaster, Mr. Creakle. There he befriends an older boy, James Steerforth, and Tommy Traddles. He develops an impassioned admiration for Steerforth, perceiving him as something noble, who could do great things if he would?...David Copperfield ? The narrator and protagonist of this veiled autobiography, created on the image of the author himself. He is characterised in the book as having perseverance, but also an undisciplined heart, which is an important point of the latter part of the book. After being adopted by his aunt Betsey Trotwood, he is called "Trotwood Copperfield" in deference to her wishes. Throughout the novel he goes by multiple names: the Peggotty family address him as "Davy", James Steerforth nicknames him "Daisy", Dora calls him "Doady", the Micawbers mostly address him by his last name, and his aunt and her circle refer to him as "Trot".

Code: 20787

2995.00 GBP


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Owned by the Earl of Portsmouth, Two Large and Beautiful Volumes,The History of the Life of King Henry IInd.

And of the age in which he lived, in five books,: to which is prefixed, a history of the revolutions of England from the death of Edward the Confessor to the birth of Henry the Second / by George Lord Lyttelton Printed for W. Sandby and J. Dodsley, 1767 [second printing] 2 impressive and original leather bound volumes, from the personal library of the Earl of Portsmouth. Three books of the set are contained in these two, beautiful, large volumes. George Lyttelton, studied at Eton (1725) and Oxford (1726) before touring the Continent (1728-31) before becoming intimate with Pope's circle at Twickenham. He was secretary to the Prince of Wales (1732-44), member of Parliament from Okehampton (1735-56); succeeded as 5th baron Lyttleton 1751, and was lord of the treasury (1744-54) and Chancellor of the Exchequer (1755-56). As an opposition politician, Lyttleton was allied to the Prince of Wales; as a poet he was associated with his near-neighbor at Hagley Park, William Shenstone.

His life was detailed by Samuel Johnson's Lives of the Poets series, published in 3 volumes between 1779 and 1781. In it Dr Johnson states 'His last literary production was his "History of Henry the Second," elaborated by the searches and deliberations of twenty years, and published with such anxiety as only vanity can dictate. The story of this publication is remarkable. The whole work was printed twice over, a great part of it three times, and many sheets four or five times. The booksellers paid for the first impression; but the changes and repeated operations of the press were at the expense of the author, whose ambitious accuracy is known to have cost him at least a thousand pounds. He began to print in 1755. Three volumes appeared in 1764, a second edition of them in 1767, a third edition in 1768, and the conclusion in 1771.

Andrew Reid, a man not without considerable abilities and not unacquainted with letters or with life, undertook to persuade Lyttelton, as he had persuaded himself, that he was master of the secret of punctuation; and, as fear begets credulity, he was employed, I know not at what price, to point the pages of "Henry the Second." The book was at last pointed and printed, and sent into the world. Lyttelton took money for his copy, of which, when he had paid the pointer, he probably gave the rest away; for he was very liberal to the indigent. When time brought the History to a third edition, Reid was either dead or discarded; and the superintendence of typography and punctuation was committed to a man originally a comb-maker, but then known by the style of Doctor. Something uncommon was probably expected, and something uncommon was at last done; for to the Doctor's edition is appended, what the world had hardly seen before, a list of errors in nineteen pages. Each volume is 11.5 inches x 9.25 inches x 2 inches

Code: 22555

475.00 GBP


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