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John Price Antiquarian Books

   Books from the hand-press era
London: Printed for W. Churchill..., 1719. FIRST EDITION. 8vo, 177 x 118 mms., pp. [xvi], 220, 234 [235 p- 236 adverts], contemporary panelled calf, dull red morocco label; lower margin of last 20 leaves wormed (not affecting text), with worming extending into rear paste-down end-paper, some worming also of lower margins of first three or four leaves and front paste-down end-paper, front free end-paper creased, top of spine slightly chipped, joints slightly worn (but very firm), corners worn. Richardson (1665 - 1745) was literary London's favourite portrait painter in the early 18th century. Samuel Johnson thought that his aesthetic theories would be more valued than his paintings, and Richardson's works are the starting-point for the classical school of art criticism in Britain. Samuel Holt Monk says of him in The Sublime that "he is worthy of notice chiefly as an innovator" and that his comments form the "most complete of the early discussions of painting." Richardson was working at a time when both writing and painting became ways of earning money, and he was one of the first English painters to become actually rich as an artist. This book also was not aimed at the cognoscenti or those who were already knowledgeable about art and aesthetic, but those who wanted to learn and need a sort of do-it-yourself guide. C. Gibson-Wood, Jonathan Richardson: Art Theorist of the English Enlightenment (2000). (Book ref. 8040)
Dublin: Printed for Ignatius Kelly..., 1745 12mo (in 6s), 162 x 90 mms., pp. [ii], 202 [203 -214 Index], recent boards, paper label on spine; occasional staining of text; with small binder's ticket on lower margin of front paste-down end-paper: "Bound by Antiquarian Bookcrafts Mary Craft Courtyard, Rathfarnham, Dublin 16." Lamotte's work was first published in London in 1730 and reprinted in 1731. It was published in Dublin - "printed for Thomas Bacon" - in 1742, and this would appear to be the same sheets with a cancel title-page, which is clearly tipped onto A2. Lamotte (?1781 - 1741) Lamotte is at pains to point out what he considers lascivious or obscene in painting, but he doesn't call for its suppression. His aesthetic principles are eclectically, but inflexibly, classical. The work also contains a ten-page comment on the origin of clocks and time-keeping. ESTC N9429 locates copies in National Library of Ireland and Trinity College [Dublin] Library in these islands; Haverford, Princeton, Library Company of Philadelphia, and California Irvine in North America. (Book ref. 8038)
London: Printed by W. Bulmer and Co. Shakepsare Printing-Office, and sold by G. Nicol..., 1794. FIRST EDITION. 4to, 262 x 208 mms., pp. [ii], 77 [78 blank], 3 engraved plates (2 folding). BOUND WITH: PHILLIPS (Charles); The Emerald Isle: A Poem. Dedicated , by Permission, to his Royal Highness the Prince Regent. Embellished with A Full Length Portrait of Brian, Kind of Ireland. Fourth Edition. London: Printed for J. J. Stockale..., 1813, ,4o, 262 x 208 mms., pp [vii] vi - viii], [9 - 159 [160 blank], engraved ("by A. Freschi. from a Plate in Dublin College Library"). 2 volumes in 1, bound in contemporary tree calf, rebacked with old darkened gilt spine laid down, black morocco label. A very good copy, with the bookplate of the antiquary and engraver Joseph Strutt (1749–1802) on the front paste-down end-paper. Richard Payne Knight (1751–1824) developed an interest in aesthetics in his 30s, and this was the first expression of his ideas, which were based to some extent on Archibald Alison's Essay on the Nature and Principles of Taste (1790). This was the work that led to a twenty-year exposition by Knight, Price, and others on the aesthetics of taste in general and garden design in particular. The Monthly Review commented in 1794 "We have perused this poem with a mixture of pleasure, disgust, and surprize; and we will endeavour to communicate to our readers some of the sensations which, on this occasion, we have experienced." The reviewer liked the poetry but found the aesthetic principles jejune and dubious. Phillips' Emerald Isle "gained Phillips an invitation to the table of the distinguished Irish advocate and judge John Philpot Curran" (ODNB). Although the poem was said to have been very popular, it did attract some hostility in volume 16 The Quarterly Review: "The poem did not belie the promise of the dedication; it is a perfect stream of praise, a shower of roses on every person who is named in it, from alpha to omega." What led Joseph Strutt, or another previous owner, to bind these two works together is anybody's guess. (Book ref. 7970)
London: Printed for J. Johnson..., 1787. FIRST EDITION. 2 volumes. 8vo,210 x 126 mms., pp. xxxi [xxxii blank], 387 [388 blank]; [ii], [xxxiii] - xlii], 449 [450 blank, 451 - 465 indexes, 466 blank, 467 - 468 adverts], contemporary calf, red and green morocco labels; bindings a bit rubbed and worn, but a good to very good set, with the armorial bookplate of John J. Kingsford on the front paste-down end-paper of each volume and his autograph and date (1868) on the recto of the front free end-paper. Lowth (1710 - 1787) published De sacra poesi Hebrćorum in 1753, and a second edition appeared in 1763. George Gregory in his introduction to his translation rightly emphasizes the work's "excellent compendium of all the best rules of taste, and all the principles of composition." Scott Mandelbrote, in his ODNB entry on Lowth comments, " Lowth's lectures established a new method for reading and understanding those passages of the Hebrew Bible, such as the Psalms and many of the writings of the prophets, that were traditionally considered as verse, as well as a means to expand and define the canon of biblical poetry. Building on the work of contemporary Oxford scholars, notably Thomas Hunt, Lowth urged the importance of setting biblical poetry in the context of oriental rather than classical style and the impossibility of ever determining the ancient vocalization of the Hebrew Bible with sufficient accuracy to identify its true metrical structure. In place of metre Lowth argued that the structure of Hebrew verse could be identified by its often parabolic or figurative mode of expression, and in particular by the parallelisms, or repetitions of similar words or phrases, sometimes in a regular order, sometimes not, that gave rhythm to Hebrew poetry and song, and served almost as an alternative to metre. Using these critical tools Lowth also tried to identify a sublime, and divinely inspired, quality in Hebrew verse." Lowth's argument at the end of volume 2 that the book of Job was the oldest book extant seems to have influenced William Blake. (Book ref. 7829)
London: John Murray..., 1827. FIRST AND ONLY EDITION. 8vo, 165 x 95 mms., pp. [iii] - viii, 334, contemporary calf, spine gilt in compartments, black morocco label; front joint slightly cracked, top and base of spine slightly chipped, but a good copy with a small circular armorial bookplate on front paste-down end-paper. The poet and Church of England clergyman (1745 - 1829) published sermons and poems in addition to this treatise on versification. Saintsbury, in his History of English Prosody described the work as a "very nicely arranged little book. If you could do with the contents and keep the form - I should like to do this with it and fill it with my own notions. His appear to me hopelessly bornés; as mine would not doubt seem to him wildly anarchic...." Saintsbury continues in this vein for a few more sentences and ends with the comment that "he was evidently a good old man, and perhaps it is only the grace of God that makes one different from him prosodic views." (Book ref. 7466)
London: Printed by J. Mawman..., 1810. 3 volumes. 8vo, 226 x 134 mms., pp. xxviii, 402 [403 - 404 adverts]; xxxi [xxxii blank], 408; viii, 400, uncut, recent half calf, marbled boards, gilt spines, morocco labels. A fine set. The first edition, in one volume, of Price's work on the picturesque appeared in 1794; a second edition of this volume, considerably enlarged, appeared in 1796, and the second volume was published in 1798. Finally, the above edition, the fullest and most complete, came out in 1810 and contained not only Price's further thoughts and revisions, but Humphrey Repton's "Letter to Uvedale Price," which was first published in 1794, as well as Repton's "Dialogue on the distant Characters of the Picturesque and the Beautiful." (Book ref. 7369)
London: Printed for R. Dodsley at Tylly's-Head in Pall-Mall, 1744. FIRST EDITION, first issue. 4to, pp. [3] - 125 [126 blank, 127 - 128 adverts dated January 14], title-page in red and black, with engraved vignette, five-line footnote on p. 9, press figure "1" in lower margin of pages 21, 30, and 32,page 20 misnumbered 22, recent full sheepskin, gilt spine, red morocco label; lacks half-title, lower margin of text water-stained, most noticeably in first ten leaves, boards a little sprung, but an attractive copy. Akenside's reputation has never been as high as it was in the 50 or 60 years or so after this work was published, e. g., Erasmus Darwin said that he"ever maintained a preference of Akenside's blank verse to Milton'," while his daughter Anna Seward recorded that she regarded the present poem as "the most splendid metaphysic poem in any language." (Book ref. 7104)
London, Printed for R. and J. Dodsley..., 1762. FIRST EDITION. 8vo, 178 x 110 mms., pp. [iv], 123 [124 blank] including half-title, with slightly later ownership "Mary Fane 1790" contemporary speckled calf, spine ornately gilt, red morocco label; front joint slightly cracked, but a very good copy. Daniel Webb (c.1719–1798) published several works on aesthetics; this was preceded by his first work, An Inquiry into the Beauties of Painting (1760), and he made judicious use of the term "beauties," a criterion popular from about 1780 to 1830 when it seems to have fallen out of use. (Book ref. 6973)
Dublin: Printed for Messrs. F. Byrne, J. Moore, Grueber and M'Allister, W. Jones, and B. White, 1790. FIRST IRISH EDITION. 8vo, pp. xiii [xiv blank, xv drop-title, xvi blank], 384, contemporary tree calf, gilt spine, rec leather label; small piece torn from corner of title-page, wormed from outer margin of front paste-down end-paper to B2 (10 leaves), with occasional loss of a letter or two, more worming of lower margin of last six leaves, with, again, loss of a letter or two, outer margin of G8 partially uncut, front joint a little worn, but an attractive copy. Alison bases his theory of taste on the principle of association, holding that in some instances we are powerless to articulate our feelings and that we are thus swept along by our conceptions, unable to guide them. For Alison, the imagination functions in much the same way that sympathy does, and this suggestion proved to be important for the Romantic development of the concept of imagination. Coleridge spoke highly of the work in Biographia Literaria, while in recent years other scholars have begun to re-assess Alison's contribution to the history of aesthetic theory. For example, in Probability and literary form: Philosophical theory and literary practice in the Augustan age (Cambridge University Press, 1984), Douglas Lane Patey notes, "Archibald Alison's influential Essays on the Nature and Principles of Taste (1790) develops in particularly interesting detail a theory of reading and composition as associative manipulation of probable signs." (Book ref. 6850)
London: Printed by W. Pearson...for J. Wilcox...and T. Osborne..., 1731. 8vo, pp. [vi], 156, 159 - 174, 179 - 203, 42 - 43, 206, with penultimate leaf signed R and paginated 203/42 and final leaf signed G2 and paginated 43/296, folding engraved plate of scales opposite p. 118, music illustrations in text, contemporary calf; lacks label, front joint cracked, top and base of rear joint slightly cracked, top and base of spine slightly chipped, but a reasonable copy, with the contemporary autograph "W M Nicholas" on the title-page. William Holder (1616 - 1696) exhibited remarkable skills as mathematician and musician at an early age; he also expressed an interest in speech and speech therapy, and his first book was The Elements of Speech (1669). The above work was first published in 1693 (date on title-page is 1694), and, according to New Grove, "praised by Burney and Hawkins for its clarity..," adding that "its preoccupation with the physical basis of music is typical of the growing spirit of scientific inquiry of the period and of the Age of Reason that brought the arts as well as the sciences within the scope of such inquiry." Holder added further lustre to his reputation with his publication in 1694 with the publication of his A Discourse concerning Time. Godfrey (or Gottfried) Keller (d. 1704) was preparing his Compleat Method for Attaining to Play Thorough Bass just before his death, and it was published posthumously in 1705 and reprinted in 1706 and 1717. This is the first appearance of Holder's work and Keller's work in the same volume, and it is the second revised edition of Keller's work. (Book ref. 6481)
London: Printed by G. Scott, For R. Blamire...Sold by B. Law..., 1781. 8vo, 179 x 117 mmx., pp. xiv [xv Contents, xvi blank], 244 [245 - 256 Index], contemporary calf, rebacked, red morocco label. With a handrawn bookplate dated 1789 and the name Matthew Asken below the word "Liberté" with a French shield above, on the front paste-down end-paper; and the bookplate of Mary Boshell on the recto of the front free end-paper. Gilpin (1724 - 1804) published this anonymously in 1768, and it was an immediate success. He revealed himself as the author in this third edition. (Book ref. 6424)
London: Printed for John War..., 1759. SOLE EDITION. 2 volumes. 8vo, 207 x 121 mms., pp. [ii], xvi, 424; [viii], 439 [440 blank], both contents leaves in volume 2 as well as "Advertisement" leaf, recently rebound in quarter calf, raised bands between gilt rules on spine, old red morocco labels preserved, marbled boards; title-pages browned and slightly soiled, with title-page of volume 1 frayed at margins. John Ward (1678/9 - 1758) was appointed Professor of Rhetoric in Gresham College in 1720. He was a genuinely helpful scholar, contributing to various publications, assisting with translations, and editing works for the press. His best-known work was a series of biographies of the professors of Gresham College. Although the inaugural oration is in Latin, his lectures, as prepared for publication before his death, are in English, but most of his examples are from classical literature. (Book ref. 6300)
London, Printed for William Crooke..., 1681. 8vo, pp. [viii], 168, 208, with verso of A1 being a portrait of Hobbes. BOUND WITH: RYMER (Thomas): The Tragedies of The last Age Consider'd and Examin'd by the Practice of the Ancients, and by the Common sense of all Ages. In a Letter to Fleetwood Shepheard. London, Printed for Richard Tonson..., 1678. FIRST EDITION. 8vo, pp. [xvi], 144, including imprimatur leaf before title-page. Two volumes in one, bound in recent full sheepskin, spine blocked in gilt. The two volumes were originally bound together as well, as the first of the two contemporary leaves before the portrait of Hobbes notes, "Hobbes' Art of Rhetoric & laws of England/ Rymers Tragedies of the last Age." The text for Hobbes's discourse on rhetoric began life as a digest in Latin of Aristotle's work on rhetoric that Hobbes made for his pupil, the son of the Countess of Devonshire, which was first published in English in 1637 as A Briefe of the Art of Rhetorique. However, both William Samuel Howell and Walter J. Ong, separately in 1951, identified the work as that published in 1584 by Dudley Fenner, The Artes of Logike and Rethorike. Hobbes's executor attributed the work to Hobbes, and it remained in the Hobbes canon for almost three hundred years. Rymer sent John Dryden a copy of his book, and Dryden said of the book that it was "the best piece of Criticism in the English tongue; perhaps in any other of the modern … and think my selfe happy he has not fallen upon me, as severely and as wittily as he has upon Shakespeare and Fletcher." Hobbes: Wing H 2212. MacDonald & Hargreaves 13. Rymer: Wing R 2430. (Book ref. 6127)
London: Printed for W. Innys and R. Manby..., 1737. FIRST EDITION. 8vo, pp. [vi], vi [vii-x Contents], 365 [366-368 adverts], contemporary speckled calf; upper and lower joints cracked, one corner badly worn, lacks label, ex-library, with library stamp of Beddington Free Grace Library on several pages. With the armorial bookplate of the mathematician Sir George Augustus William Shuckburgh Bart. (1751 - 1804) on the front paste-down end-paper. Manwaring develops some interesting ideas about language in his book. Remarking in his introduction that we "learn indeed these Authors at School, but what do we learn? The Interpretation, perhaps, of the Words, not much of the Things...," and he considers the psychological effects that literature, particularly poetry and drama, have on the reader/spectator. (Book ref. 5997)
London: Printed by Luke Hansard & Sons...for T. Payne..., 1808. 8vo, pp. xx, 476, contemporary diced russia, spine gilt (faded and browned), morocco label; front joint slightly cracked and tender. With the Charland Castle armorial bookplate on the front paste-down end-paper. The first edition of Knight's book was published in 1805, partly in response to Uvedale Price's work on the picturesque. Knight made numerous changes and expansions in the second edition, also published in 1805. The third edition appeared in 1806, and the fourth would appear to be a straightforward reprint of that text. (Book ref. 5974)
London, Printed for L. Davis and C. Reymers..., 1763. FIRST EDITION. 4to, pp. 248 [249 - 250 adverts], title-page in red and black, contemporary calf, spine ornately gilt in compartments, morocco label; spine faded with some loss of gilt, joints very slightly worn, corners worn. A modest copy. Brown's argument is an elegant example of cultural primitivism: the simplicity and power to move of music has been corrupted by modern refinement and impositions: "The Poet's and Musician's Office cannot probably be again united in their full and general Power. For in their present refined State, either of their Arts separately considered, is of such Extent, that although they may incidentally meet in one Person, they cannot often be found together." Jaime Croy Cassler, in the entry on John Brown in The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, claims that Brown's Dissertation "is remarkable for being one of the earliest systematic, self-contained treatises in English on the general history of music. In it Brown isolated 36 stages in musical history, from the early united of melody, dance and song and its perfection in Greek society to the separation and degeneration of those arts in the 18th century." Eddy 76. (Book ref. 5922)
London: Printed for A. Bettesworth..., F. Clay..., and E. Syman..., 1723. 12mo, pp. [viii], 108 [109 - 112 adverts], slightly later 18th century sheepskin; lower portion of spine defective with some loss of leather and cords exposed, front joint a little worn, later inscription in pencil on verso of front free end-paper, "William Wiles/ His Painting/ Book." In some editions of this work, Smith is identified as a clockmaker, and on the title-page here, "C. M." follows his name. This is probably John Smith (1647/8–1727?), a clockmaker and writer, who published his Horological Disquisitions concerning the Nature of Time in 1694. The earliest located edition of this is a "second impression" of 1687; at least a further eight editions followed, and the work is frequently cited in treatises or essays on oil painting. ESTC T228403 locates copies in the BL, the National Gallery, and Jesus College, Oxford; and LC in the USA. (Book ref. 5916)
London: Sold by J. Thornton, R. Elliot, H. Crompton, and W. Richards, 1779 12mo, pp. [ii], vii [viii blank], 150, contemporary sheepskin; text a bit soiled and browned, long vertical tear in last leaf very slightly affecting text, binding falling to bits. ESTC N5701: BL; UCLA, University of California, Riverside,  University of Miami, Coral Gables. (Book ref. 5737)
Edinburgh: Printed by Avernethy & Walker, For William Martin. W. Creech...[et al], 1808. 2 volumes. Large 8vo, pp. xx [xxi Directions to the Binder, xxii blank], 398; vi, [399] - 772, engraved portrait of Ramsay as frontispiece in volume 1, folding map and 11 other engraved plates, engraved frontispiece and 2 other engraved plates in volume 2, contemporary half calf, morocco labels, marbled boards (a little rubbed), rebacked with old spine of volume 2 laid down and preserved, with spine of volume 2 rebacked to match; lacks half-titles, text foxed. Burns Martin 267. (Book ref. 5618)
Newcastle: Printed for J. White and T. Saint..., 1764. FIRST EDITION. 8vo, pp. 266 [267 - 268 adverts], contemporary calf; front cover detached, rear joint cracked, binding worn. The Advertisement notes, "It is thought proper to inform the Purchasers of the 'Dissertation the Rise, Union, &c. of Poetry and Music,' that the Substance of this Volume is contained in That; which is now thrown into the present Form, for the Sake of such classical Readers as are not particularly conversant with Music." Brown's Dissertation was published in 1763 in London. Brown's book is a constructive and instructive attempt to fuse literary history and aesthetic theory, and while some of Brown's theorizing is apparently at odds with his facts, he nevertheless was trying to keep aesthetics firmly grounded in empirical data. Eddy 65. (Book ref. 5528)