Two works in one volume, 8vo, pp. lxiv, 293,  imprimatur; xvi, 64; with an engraved frontispiece to the second work, and 26 small text engravings in the first work (all 27 being of the BVM), a very good copy in contemporary Italian vellum, spine lettered in gilt; plain endpapers, red edges. First and only editions of both works. These two compilations tell the story of multiple miraculous events, which gripped the Marche region in 1796-97, beginning at Ancona on 25 June 1796. That evening in the cathedral of S. Ciriaco, a picture of the Madonna was seen to open her eyes: the miracle was repeated before the bishop, the governor and other worthies, so that nobody could deny that it had occurred - the second work in this volume, printed a few weeks later in Rome, publishes testimonial letters by numerous witnesses. This was just the start. Following the miracle at Ancona, similar eye-rolling took place in other representations of the Virgin Mary, in Rome and elsewhere: Marchetti's book prints the testimony, and painstaking investigations, relating to twenty-six other such miracles. The ecclesiastical authorities took great care to examine the witnesses, and on p. 221, for greater authenticity, this copy carries the autograph signatures of the Cardinal Vicar of Rome (Giulio Maria della Somaglia), and of Francesco Mari, the notary at the trial. Professor J.H. Whitfield, who owned this copy, used it in his book on the poet Giacomo Leopardi, to point a historical contrast between old and new: even whilst these medieval-style miracles were being investigated and authenticated, the catastrophe of Napoleonic conquest was ripping apart the old Italy, and within two years virtually all of Italy north of the Kingdom of Naples was under the young Corsican's control. Whitfield dramatically sets the one against the other: 'To one year, 1797, belongs the volume De' Prodigi avvenuti. with its set of poor engravings of the pictures which worked the miracles: but to the next belongs instead the Costituzione della Repubblica Romana.' With regard to the subject of his book, he further illustrates the contrast by showing that one of the supporting witnesses, the Marchese Francesco Tommasini (whose letter is printed on pp. 39-41 of Raccolta di varie lettere) was a neighbour of the Leopardi family, from their home town of Recanati, not far south of Ancona. This was the atmosphere of the poet's locality, into which he was born on 29 June 1798. Provenance 1. Inscription on the endpaper facing the first title page: 'Il Presente Libro intitolata dei Prodigi etc. è del Cance. Telesforo Galli'. Telesforo Galli (1769-1845) was an Italian priest, one of the consultors of the Congregation of Indulgences, whose Raccolta di orazioni e pie opere was first published in 1807. 2. Inscription on upper pastedown, in pencil: 'Charles Weld Roma 1849'. This is very probably Charles Weld (1812-85) of Chideock Manor, Dorset: he came from an old-established Catholic family: his grandfather, Thomas Weld, gave land to the returning Jesuits to found Stonyhurst College; and an uncle, another Thomas Weld, had been made a Cardinal. Charles built an extraordinary 'mortuary chapel' at Chideock, which anticipates the arts and crafts movement style by almost half a century. 3. Professor John Humphreys Whitfield (1906-95), Italian scholar and author of Giacomo Leopardi (1954), although with no ownership inscription. Whitfield refers to it on p. 3: 'This little volume, which I have before me as I write.'
SANDYS, Sir Edwin.
4to, pp. [xii], 248; a very few gatherings (e.g. f1-4 and q1-4) quite browned, but generally a fine clean copy, bound in contemporary limp vellum; ties missing; lettered 'Sandys' in ink on spine. First edition of what is supposedly the original text of the book first published in 1605 by Simon Waterson, under the title A relation of the state of religion. in the severall states of these westerne parts of the world. This is the only extended work of the politician and colonial entrepreneur Sir Edwin Sandys (1561-1629). Sandys had been educated at Merchant Taylors' School, where he was a contemporary of Lancelot Andrewes and Edmund Spenser, and then at Corpus Christi Oxford, where he was taught by Richard Hooker, the publication of whose Laws of Ecclesiastical Polity he sponsored as a new MP for Plympton in 1593. Sandys's most lasting friendship, however, was with George Cranmer (great-nephew of the Archbishop), who shared his education at school, university and the Inns of Court: they spent three years together in 1596-99, travelling in Germany, Geneva, Italy and France, and this gave Sandys the material for his book. The text seems to have been finished just before the two returned to England - the last page here is dated from Paris, 9 April 1599. The book is indicative of Sandys's tolerant, reconciliatory attitude towards the different strands of Christianity. It remained unpublished, however, until June 1605, when it was printed for Simon Waterson. The book proved popular and was reprinted; but soon afterwards the discovery of the Gunpowder Plot resulted in an anti-Catholic backlash, and it was ordered to be publicly burnt, a sentence the author himself is supposed to have requested. Perhaps embarrassed by appearing to be on Rome's side, Sandys claimed that the 1605 text was 'a spurious stolen copy. throughout most shamefully falsified'. Such a statement looks like the sort of denial common among politicians then as now ('I was misquoted'), but it is given some credence by the appearance of this text nearly a quarter of a century later. The text in this edition is apparently close to that found in a presentation manuscript now at Lambeth Palace (MS 2007), given to John Whitgift (d. 1604) as Archbishop of Canterbury: he is the dedicatee of the work as printed here (pp. 1-2). In other matters, Sandys took a prominent role in Parliament, successfully opposing James VI and I's attempts to place the government of England and Scotland in union, and forming a moderate gentry party that sought to restrain the royal prerogative and establish the Commons as a significant influence on government policy. His achievement was overshadowed by the events of the 1630s and 1640s, when the Commons moved into conflict with the Crown. He also had another role to play in English public life: in 1607, two years after the original publication, he was on the council of the Virginia Company and ten years later he was involved in the negotiations with the Leiden puritans which resulted in the voyage of the Mayflower in 1620. He also invested in property in Bermuda, and was involved in the East India Company. Comparison with the work as published in 1605 shows that this is indeed a very different text, which was (as the final words of the book, on p. 248, tell us) 'Copied out by the Authors originall' in October 1618. One assumes, therefore, that the text here is the book as Sandys originally wrote it, only adjusting it to tone down his implied sympathy for the Catholics in 1605, for its first publication. The preface names the author but oddly is unable to state if is still alive: 'It may bee, I hereby shall incurre some dislike from the learned Author, (if He be yet liuing,) who haply in his modestie, and for some other causes best knowne unto him selfe. hath so long obscured and suppressed his pregnant view.'. (Sandys did in fact die the same year, in late October, but he had already retired from public life, having lost his seat in Parliament in early 1628.) The preface is roundly assertive about the quality of this text, as compared with that of the earlier edition: what was printed in 1605 was 'a spurious stolne Copie; in part epitomized, in part amplified, and throughout most shamefully falsified & false printed'. It goes on to state that Sandys supported its suppression because the text misrepresented him; and because some of those copies have remained in circulation, this new edition is necessary. Despite the author of the preface saying that he is 'liuing here in these Transmarine Batavian Belgique parts', it is generally assumed that he was the London bookseller Michael Sparke, who apparently commissioned the edition from a Dutch printer at The Hague. We know that he was somehow involved, because he inscribed a copy to 'my cousen Noell Sparke' (this is the copy now at Harvard), and indeed he published the next edition, in 1632, quite openly. Provenance. This copy has been very considerably annotated by John Loveday (1711-89), traveller, antiquary and collector. Loveday was a gentleman scholar living at Caversham, just over the river from Reading: he was fond of annotating his books, and his small, attractive hand is very recognisable. He handed on his library to his son, Dr John Loveday (1742-1809), and there are also notes in the son's hand on the page facing the title. The father has written copious notes on the rear endpapers in both pencil and ink, and numerous cross-references and corrections in the text, showing that he read the book with minute care and attention. STC 21718. See Sarah Markham, John Loveday of Caversham (1984).
Three works in one volume, small 8vo (text block 140 x 92mm); ff. 60; pp. [x], 44,  privilege; ff. ; woodcut on first title, device on second title, and fine large device on last page of third work; bound in late 16th century olive morocco for Jacques-Auguste de Thou (see below); gilt arms on both covers, and monogram initials in three compartments of spine, with the names of the authors in the other two. (Very slight rubbing on joints.) A splendid binding for the historian and bibliophile Jacques-Auguste de Thou (1553-1617), with his arms as a bachelor. De Thou married three times, and later bindings carry his arms and initials combined with those of his successive wives. The first work in this volume is a very early edition of Savonarola's dialogue between the spirit and the soul, a devotional work titled Solatium itineris mei. The edition follows that printed at Venice the previous year, and is dedicated to Marco Cataneo, auxiliary Bishop of Genoa and titular Archbishop of Rhodes, by Paolo de' Franchi (1490-1544), who surnamed himself 'Parthenopæus'. He describes the year 1536 as the seventh year of liberty, clearly referring to the expulsion of the French from the city in 1528/9, after which Andrea Doria become the de facto ruler of the city. After 1528, de' Franchi seems to have taken an active part in the city's government and intellectual life. He apparently commissioned this work from Antonio Bellone of Turin, who had recently arrived in Genoa - his first recorded book is dated 29 January 1534, and the same year he had printed a political oration by de' Franchi, on the love of one's country (CNCE 54836). The second work is an early book from the press of Christopher Plantin, a collection of pieces by Johannes Hassel on the Council of Trent and other subjects. The third is by the Lutheran theologian Johannes Brenz (1499-1570), who was pastor of Michaelskirche, Schwäbisch Hall. All in all, a very theologically mixed compilation, quite appropriate for a man of de Thou's broad sympathies and tolerant outlook. I: CNCE 32092 (locating only five copies in Italy); Adams S516; not in BMC Italian. II: Adams H84; not in BMC Netherlands. III: VD16 B7479; Adams B2752; not in BMC German.
BOETHIUS, Anicius Manlius Torquatus Severinus.
Small 8vo, ff. [viii], 104; set in italic letter throughout; title page with border of typeflowers; a fine copy rebound in plain calf in the 19th century for Sir William Stirling; marbled endpapers, red edges. (A little rubbed.) Early edition of this translation into Italian by Anselmo Tanzo. Provenance. From the library of the great collector and hispanophile Sir William Stirling (1818-78), later Stirling Maxwell, with his arms on upper cover, initials on lower cover (both blindstamped), and bookplate on pastedown. The initials on the covers, WS, and the bookplate as 'William Stirling', indicates that the book must have come into his possession before 1865, the year in which his uncle Sir John Maxwell died, when he succeeded to the baronetcy and changed his name. Adams B2297; CNCE 6555; this edition not in BMC Italian.
8vo in fours, pp. [viii], 80,  epilogues; without the half title; in later wrappers. First edition. First performed at Covent Garden in November 1781. As is well known, this play is an adaptation of Horace Walpole's novel The Castle of Otranto (1765) by his friend, who dedicates the play to him 'with the greatest respect and gratitude'. The dedication is not in all copies, and (despite its being signed 'a2' and immediately preceding a3) is in fact a singleton, which suggests that it was added at the last moment. Many of the surviving copies are missing this leaf; it might plausibly be argued, I suppose, that copies without it constitute an early issue, but that might seem like special pleading. The epilogue is by another eminent friend of Jephson, Edmond Malone; there is also a second epilogue by R.J. Goodenough, who contributed it before he knew that Malone had been asked to provide one. Hazen, Walpole, p. 169.
8vo, pp. 8; a fine copy, stitched as issued. Sixth edition of this instructional poem by the Quaker preacher Anthony Purver (1702-77). Footnotes reveal that it was written at Coggeshall, Essex, on 22 July 1737, and it is assumed that the earliest edition, a broadside, was published in that year (see Foxon P1176). There was a sequence of later editions, and although this one has no imprint or date, it is assumed that it follows on from the fifth edition published by James Phillips of London in 1785 Smith, Friends' books, II 437.
4to (293 x 240mm), pp. iv, 47,  colophon; title page with large vignette; and with 12 hand-coloured aquatint plates by T. Fielding and Charles Heath, after Westall; complete with tissue guards, but with some staining nonetheless; contemporary half morocco over marbled boards, spine somewhat worn, old label (chipped); a good solid copy. A splendid series of coloured aquatints after designs by Richard Westall, illustrating the battles won by Wellington's forces, first in the Peninsula, and then over the Pyrenees, at Toulouse and finally at Waterloo in June 1815. Abbey Life 381.
8vo, pp. viii, 295; with final plate on p. ; many vignettes after Thomas Stothard and J.M.W. Turner; an uncut copy in original grey boards, a bit rubbed, but preserving original paper label. 'The loveliest engravings ever produced by the pure line' - this was Ruskin's opinion of Turner's vignettes for Rogers's Poems and Italy. This volume was a celebrated book even in its own time, and today is recognised as a landmark in Turner's book illustrations. The present copy is uncut in the original boards, with the label reading 'Proofs, 2l.12s.6d.', and indeed each of the vignettes has 'proof' after the signature of the engraver. See Jan Piggott, Turner's vignettes (1993), pp. 39-44 and 98-99. A previous copy of this book I have seen had a portrait of Rogers as a frontispiece, but there does not seem ever to have been one in this copy and I do not think it is called for in the book.
Folio (298 x 197mm), pp. [xvi], 3-267,  table of animals,  index; 40; title page in red and black; with additional engraved title (by Richard Waller) and 35 plates, of which 30 are in the first part and five are in the second; a very good copy in contemporary calf (rebacked, corners a bit worn, modern labels). First edition, reissued with a redated title page in 1701, and then again in 1702, with a slightly altered title (The natural history of animals): this is the only edition. The work is a translation of Perrault's Memoires pour servir à l'histoire naturelle des animaux (1671-76), containing 35 fine plates of animals: these are not the French plates, as printed by the Imprimerie Royale, but must have been recreated by copying from the originals - they are close copies, but perhaps lacking some of the finesse of the Paris edition. Alexander Pitfeild (1659-1728) had been elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1684. Richard Waller, Secretary of the Society from 1687 to 1714, was his brother-in-law, and as he apparently designed the title page, which is signed 'R. Waller fec', he may have been responsible for the plates as well - as his biographer in ODNB says, 'among the fellows he became known for his artistic skills'. Wing P1582A. Provenance. Inscription on upper pastedown of Anne Mainwaring, dated 8 May 1751.
Manuscript in ink, 4to (227x 184mm), three pages (final page blank); 12 stanzas of four lines each (48 lines in all); on laid paper, with traces of watermark, possibly 'S.I.' (paper damaged at fold). An attractive verse elegy, almost certainly commemorating the lawyer Thomas Tower (1698?-1778), who was MP for Wareham 1729-34, and for Wallingford 1734-41. This elegy is apparently unrecorded and unpublished. Tower came from a Buckinghamshire family, but he bought or inherited a house in Brentwood called Weald House (which still stands); in 1760-61 he was appointed High Sheriff for Essex. During his time in the Commons, he was a member of the governing body of the Georgia Society, promoting its establishment as the Province of Georgia in 1732, when he was named as one of the original twenty-one Trustees in the Royal Charter granted in that year. Not in the Folger's Union First-Line Index of English Verse (online), nor in Crum or Osborn.
[SHAKESPEARE.] UPTON, John.
8vo, pp. [iv], 346,  index,  advertisements; contemporary calf, spine with mid-19th century labels. Armorial bookplate of William Lee of Hartwell, and inscription 'Hartwell Library', recording the book's repair at Aylesbury, 1837; and later bookplates of the same family. First edition of this criticism of Shakespeare by John Upton (1707-60), who is better known for his annotated edition of Spenser's Faerie Queene (1758). This commentary on Shakespeare, which defends the playwright's learning from those who would see him as an untutored genius, is also thoroughly footnoted - the text is frequently crowded out by the notes, which must consist of almost half of the book. The last of the three sections considers Shakespeare's grammar, spelling and rhythm. This copy comes from the Hartwell Library, belonging to the Lee family: Dr John Lee in the mid-19th century had the books restored and catalogued, but the collection must have been considerably older: it contained a celebrated MS of Rochester's poems now in the Beinecke Library at Yale. Jaggard p. 673.
Two volumes, 8vo, pp. xxxii, 316; xv, [i], 308; a very good copy, uncut, in contemporary or original green cloth, soundly rebacked. First edition, inscribed by the author: 'P. Hoare from the Author', and dated 1827. This is slightly odd, because the playwright and artist Prince Hoare (1755-1834) is among the subscribers. John Taylor (1757-1832) was primarily a journalist and editor, but he had a facility for verse, and was extremely fond of the stage: the first 150pp in volume I is largely composed of prologues, epilogues and other theatrical verse; he also wrote many sonnets, and addressed many of the great writers of the age. There are numerous poems on or addressed to Byron, Scott, Wordsworth and Southey, as well as similar addresses to artists such as Thomas Lawrence and John Opie.
Folio (455 x 280mm), engraved frontispiece and pp. [xl], 506,  index; dampstaining at head of the volume in the middle; finely bound in contemporary black morocco, panelled in gilt; gilt edges, marbled endpapers, with red morocco label. (Spine very slightly rubbed.) A sumptuous edition, published by subscription. This is one of the copies printed for subscribers, with the watermark of a Strasburg bend: copies of the trade issue have the London arms, and those of the largest size have a fleur-de-lys over a shield. Although some copies have a few sheets with watermarks which are 'wrong' for the issue they represent, the key is in fact in the dimension of the inner margin, which in this copy is clearly that of the subscriber's issue (see final paragraph, below). During the reign of Queen Anne, Prior had been employed at a high level in the diplomatic service, but when the Whigs came to power after the Hanoverian succession he was one of those accused of corruption and treason, particularly with regard to the negotiations leading to the Treaty of Utrecht, and he was dismissed from his posts and placed under house arrest. After his release he found himself without any immediate source of funds, and to assist him the Tory peers Lord Harley and Lord Bathurst conceived the idea of publishing his poems by subscription; also involved in this project were a number of fellow members of the Kit-Cat Club, most notably the bookseller and publisher Jacob Tonson, and, as an adviser, Alexander Pope, whose recent subscription edition of the Iliad had been extremely profitable. In the end the venture was a great success; the 20-page list of subscribers includes 1445 names, for 1786 copies. Not surprisingly, the book remains, relatively speaking, a common book among the great literary publications of the Augustan age. 'The book reprinted and reordered all the poems from the 1709 edition of Poems on Several Occasions and added a number of poems written since that time, notably 'Solomon' and 'Alma'. Though he probably did not make as much money as is commonly cited (4000 guineas), Prior undeniably made a small fortune by this publication and found himself comfortably off for the rest of his life, independently wealthy and no longer dependent on repayments from a remiss and recalcitrant government' (Oxford DNB). Illustration. With a classical frontispiece engraved by B. Baron after a design by Louis Cheron; a large engraved vignette on the title-page, and numerous engraved head-pieces and tail-pieces. Provenance. Contemporary armorial bookplate of Philip Southcote (1698-1758). Southcote, from a relatively impoverished Catholic family, was the creator of a notable - and influential - landscape garden at Woburn Farm, Surrey; he also became friendly with several artists and poets, such as Alexander Pope, William Kent and Lord Burlington. Although this sumptuous copy must originally have been subscription copy, his name is not in the list of subscribers - at the age of only twenty, he was too young and too poor to have put his name down for an expensive book like this; moreover, like so many other young Catholic men, he was educated in France, returning to England only in 1723. However, in the early 1730s he married Anne Pulteney (d. 1745), widow of the Duke of Cleveland (one of Charles II's illegitimate sons), and his financial position was transformed. Neither Anne nor her first husband had been subscribers, either, but her family had: 'The Right Honourable William Pulteney' is down for two copies. This is her nephew William Pulteney (1684-1764), already a powerful politician and a privy councillor, and future political enemy of Robert Walpole; in 1742 he became Earl of Bath. It is possible that the book was given to the Duchess of Cleveland by her brother, or indeed by Pulteney to his aunt's second husband after their marriage. In modern times the book belonged to A.N.L. Munby (1913-74), scholar, book collector and librarian of King's Cambridge. Foxon p. 641. The key to different paper sizes was established by H. Bunker Wright in an article in Modern Philology in 1952: the inner margin of the trade edition measures 1.25 inches; that of this medium (i.e. subscription) issue is 1.75 inches; and the 'superfine' luxury size is over 3 inches. The present copy is about 10cm taller than a copy of the trade issue I have in stock, and is 2cm taller than a copy of the subscriber's issue bound in green morocco which I had in stock some years ago.
Two volumes, 8vo, additional title page and pp. [iv], [xiii]-413; [iv], [ix]-377, ; with a six-page advertisement catalogue at the end of volume II; in the original dark grey cloth, covers stamped in blind, spines pictorially gilt. First edition in English, published simultaneously in the US and in the UK. Wolff describes this as an 'anti-secret-society novel': Bresciani (1798-1862) was an Jesuit priest and his novel, first published in 1850, was influential in fuelling anti-semitic sentiment in Italy and elsewhere. Wolff 808. He notes that his copy, which is in a different-coloured cloth, may have been printed in Britain but the title pages are American title. In this copy, the advertisements are for the Baltimore publishers, and were clearly printed there. However, the endpapers carry a contemporary stamp of a Doncaster bookseller and must have been marketed in Britain.
12mo, pp. [iv], xxii, [ii], 465,  table,  approbation & privilege,  errata,  explanation of the errata; contemporary tan calf, gilt armorial on both covers, spine gilt, morocco label (slightly worn all over, especially at corners of boards). First and only edition of this interesting explanation and debunking of popular medical superstitions and errors. The author must have been Basque, as he gives a Basque translation of his book's name opposite the title page. In a very curious and lengthy explanation of the errata at the end, Iharce apologises for the errors, and protests against those who will dislike his spelling: 'Y a-t-il de plus raisonable que d'écrire conformément à la bone prononciation, & de raprocher, autant qu'il est possible, l'orthographe des regles de la grammaire, & de la simplicité naturele?' In particular he cites the grammatical works of César Chesneau du Marsais (1676-1756). Rare: no copy at Harvard, although there are copies in the National Library of Medicine, Yale, Newberry and American Philosophical Society. This is apparently Iharce's only book.
Two volumes, 12mo, pp. [xii], 512,  index; [ii], 544,  index; with additional engraved title in first volume, and fourteen plates (8 in vol I, 6 in vol II); a fine copy in contemporary Dutch vellum, spines lettered in ink. Early edition in Dutch of the Vita della regina Elisabetta by Gregorio Leti, satirist, historian and convert to protestantism: he spent a few years in England in the early 1680s but his latter years were spent in Amsterdam. A fine copy, with attractive illustrations.
Ten volumes bound in eleven (the first volume being designed to be bound as two), pp. [iv], lxxxix, [ii], 414; [ii], 331, , 316; [ii], 539; [ii], 636; [ii], 570; [i]], 604; [ii], '624' (actually 628); [ii], 600; [ii], 702; [ii] 648; [ii], 692,  index; with five plates in volume I (i) and one each in volumes I (ii), V and X (making eight in all, one of them folding, with some tears, but complete); signature T bound after U in volume I (ii), mispagination in volumes II and VI but quite complete; nicely bound in early 19th century half calf, spines gilt, morocco labels (one spine noticeably repaired, but all in good condition), marbled edges and endpapers. First Malone edition: this is the first edition of the plays to include a scholarly edition of the Poems, reusing and refining the work Malone had done on the Sonnets when he issued, in 1780, his supplement to the Johnson-Steevens edition of 1778. It was also the first to include a Glossarial Index, showing the increasingly technical and sophisticated approach to the editing of Shakespeare. 'As Malone died before setting in order his chaotic notes for the 21-volumes variorum, the task Boswell's son completed, this 1790 edition was the best memorial in his lifetime' (Franklin). Franklin, Shakespeare Domesticated, pp. 44, 130 and 174; Jaggard p. 505. Provenance. Ownership inscription in volume I of J. Skynner, the gift of Eliz. Swale, April 1791.
8vo, pp. 189; a very good copy in contemporary calf, a bit rubbed, but sound. Old booklabel of the Rev. H. Campbell. Sole edition. This is a rare little recusant book by the Catholic priest Edward Cary (d. 1711): he had begun to train for the priesthood with the Jesuits of St Omer, but later seems to have turned against them. Here he argues in favour of the oath of allegiance of 1606, which most English Catholics accepted, but which the Jesuits rejected. It is interesting that even though this work argued for the status quo, it was not felt safe (perhaps because of the recent fuss about the Popish Plot) for either author or printer to set his name to the book. Cary was an army chaplain under James II, but fled the country in 1688-89: he was heard of in Rouen some time later, but died in obscurity in 1711. Wing C722. Provenance. Apparently from Heythrop College library, with discreet shelflabel 'Bib. Mai. Heythrop' on front endpaper.
VISSCHER, Nicolaus, publisher.
Folio (319 x 200mm), three parts in one volume, ff. [viii], 71; [ii], 121; [ii], 85; with a fine additional engraved title (included in preceding foliation); letterpress title printed in red and black; title page neatly repaired at foredge, else a good clean copy in contemporary Dutch vellum, neatly rebacked and with new endpapers. A fine polyglot picture bible published by Nicolaus Visscher, with 277 engraved illustrations to passages from both Old and New Testaments. Each has a four-line verse below, in Latin, French, English, German and Dutch, and the appropriate biblical passage (in prose) opposite, in the same five languages. None of the text engravings is signed, but the Royal Library at the Hague attributes them to Matthias Merian and others. Wing A747B - listed there because of the English language text included.
LA SERRE, Jean Puget de.
4to, engraved additional title page and pp. [xl], 280,  table; letterpress title page printed in red and black; a very good, fresh copy in contemporary English sheep, spine repaired, later label. First published in 1640 and here greatly expanded in the second printing: the first edition was only about half the length of this edition. The translation is by John Massinger, who appears to be no relation to the dramatist Philip Massinger: he may well have been a lawyer, as he dedicates the book to Thomas Berney of Gray's Inn. Thomas (d.1693) was the son of a baronet, Sir Richard Berney, of Norfolk, and had been at Caius Cambridge before going on to the Inns of Court. Wing L460: the early editions of this useful and entertaining book are oddly rare, with ESTC locating only seven copies of the first, and ten of this edition - and two of those (National Trust and Yale) are incomplete.
Folio (313 x 200mm), pp. [xii], 569,  index and errata; engraved portrait of the author at end of preliminaries; a very fine copy in contemporary armorial calf, with gilt arms in centre of each cover, and monogram 'DSD' in corner of all four covers; plain endpapers. (Head and tail of spine slightly chipped, head of upper joint beginning to split.) First edition: a posthumous publication, as Grotius himself had died in 1645. The work is prefaced with a dedication signed by his sons, Cornelis and Pieter. Binding. In a fine contemporary calf binding, with unidentified arms on both covers, apparently of a Brabantine family. With manuscript notes in an early continental hand, in Latin, on pp. 3, 5, 38, 187, 227, 333, 336 and 340.
4to (214 x 155mm), pp. 4; drop-head title; cut close at foot, affecting the catchword (only) on p. 2; MS deletion of one word and insertion of a date on the same page; rather frail; disbound. Sole contemporary edition of this poem: very rare. This is a poetical satire on European politics in the years up to and including 1706: it pictures the various great powers deciding on their stakes at cards. Five games are played, one for each year of 1702-6, the last one being dubbed 'The Conquering Game': predictably, each year seems to end with England as the winner. Holland dealt next; France the First Trick did get, But England by the Honours won the Set. Bavaria Ruin'd, threw the Cards away, And had not left another Cross to Play (p. 3) This very scarce poem is exceptionally poorly printed, with numerous errors: 'Cahds', 'baulk,d', and 'Pornugal' are only the most obvious of the mistakes. Foxon R308, locating only the British Library copy; ESTC adds one more, at the Clark. The same text, with the dates suppressed, was printed again in Dublin in the late 1740s, applying the same text to the political situation at the peace of Aix-la-Chapelle, 1748.
[YOUNG, John, translator.]
Small 8vo, pp. xi, [i], 15; 7; a fine copy, uncut in the original drab boards (spine a bit chipped). Second edition: originally printed in London in 1804, but in this edition the original Greek text is added in the second section. These patriotically-intended translations are by John Young (1746/7-1820): he spent his entire life in Glasgow - born there, he went to the University, where he later became Professor of Greek, remaining in the post for more than forty-five years. In his dedication he addresses those Britons arming 'to defend, on British ground, the honour, the liberty, the laws, the hearths, and the altars, of the British Empire'. Provenance. This is a presentation copy, inscribed 'To James Watt Esqr from The Translator': this is James Watt (1736-1819) the elder, engineer and inventor, whose improved steam engine drove the industrial revolution in Britain. By 1804 Watt was one of the illustrious living Scotsmen, although long since resident in Birmingham. Sold as part of lot 509 in the James Watt sale, Sotheby's London, 20 March 2003.
[POPE, Alexander, editor.]
12mo, pp. [ii], 287,  indexes,  advertisements; a fine copy in contemporary panelled calf, spine gilt, labelled 'Pope's Miscell' and '2'. (Cracking at head of joints, but very sound.) Volume II only of the fifth edition of this important miscellany, which evolved out of the miscellanies first printed in 1712 and 1717, and which gradually became more and more centred on the poetry of Pope, who by this date had the contents fully under his control. This volume is of considerable interest as it is inscribed on the title page: 'Walt. Harte D.D. Alex. Pope Arm.' Walter Harte (1709-1774) was educated at St. Mary Hall, Oxford, where as an undergraduate he was introduced to Alexander Pope, possibly by Joseph Spence. His first book was Poems on Several Occasions, also printed in 1727, whilst he was still a teenager: the volume included a panegyric 'To Mr. Pope', and the older and more famous poet subscribed for four copies. Harte later said that Pope had corrected every page in the volume 'with his own hand'; the two poets remained mutual admirers for many years. It is tempting to think that this book must have been given to Harte by Pope in the first flush of their friendship. The first volume is missing, but perhaps (since Harte inscribed volume II) it was never present, and this was all that Pope gave him. The inscription records Pope as being 'Arm.' - that is being 'armigerous', or having the right to a heraldic achievement of arms - which of course he was not: Harte has later deleted that description, but one can imagine that as a young man he might well have been so overawed by Pope that he put him in a higher social class than he really was. Case, English poetical miscellanies, 260 (2) (d).