Sort by:

John Price Antiquarian Books

   Books from the hand-press era
London: Printed by J. Wright...For Vernor and Hood..., Longman and Reese..., 1804. 2 volumes. 8vo, 208 x 126 mms., pp. 350 [351 adverts, 352 blank]; [iv], 395 [396 colophon], including half-title in each volume, engraved portrait (after Titian) of Boccaccio as frontispiece in volume 1, engraved vignette on each title-page, contemporary tree calf, red and green morocco labels; joints on volume 1 cracked (but holding), but a good set. This translation by Charles Balguy (1708 - 1767) was first published in 1741, and ODNB claims that it was many times reprinted. The present set does seem to be a much expanded second edition, with a great deal of additional material. The revision is by Edward Dubois (1774 - 1850), who published A Piece of Family Biography in 1799 and Old Nick: a Satirical Story in 1801. The notice in The European Magazine and London Review, for 1804, having asserted that Il Decamerone had always been "considered too free in its language for general perusal" praises Dubois' redaction: "A Gentleman and Scholar who has able distinguished himself as Novelist and Critic under the whimsical name of Old Nick, has her done all that we think can be performed towards purifying and chastening the diction, without deteriorating the rich humour of the Novels." (Book ref. 8079)
Oxford, Printed by W. Jackson, for the Author, 1752. FIRST EDITION. 4to, 246 x 194 mms., pp. [iv] - xvii [xviii blank], 472 [473 - 474 errata], including list of subscribers, contemporary calf, neatly rebacked with old spine gilt in compartments and red morocco label laid down. A very good to fine copy, with the armorial bookplate of A. T. Hamilton on the front paste-down end-paper. Ballard (1706 - 1755) included lives of such notable literary ladies as Mary Astell, Anne Finch, and Lady Masham, as well as famous wives and sovereigns. The subscribers' list includes 143 women, as well as a number of Oxbridge notables, e. g., Edward Gibbon. Ballard was an early mature student, being admitted to Magdalen College, Oxford, at the age of 44. He taught himself Old English as well as Latin and established himself as a more than competent antiquary. ODNB records, "The section of the work which covers the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries is dedicated to the wife of the Revd William Talbot 'as a small testimony of gratitude for extraordinary favours' conferred on Ballard by herself and her husband; the section covering later centuries is dedicated to Mrs Mary Delany, 'the truest judge and brightest pattern of all the accomplishments which adorn her sex'. Perhaps because of the nature of his trade Ballard was acquainted with many women in the Chipping Campden area, and he is credited with rescuing his fellow Saxonist Elizabeth Elstob from penury in Evesham by introducing her to another Gloucestershire acquaintance, Sarah Chapone, who succeeded in raising an annuity for her." (Book ref. 8066)
Lugd[uni] Batavorum, Ex Officina Elseviriana, 1635. 12mo, 127 x 74 mms., pp. 342 [343 - 350 chronology, 351 adverts, 352 blank], engraved vignette on title-page, contemporary vellum; corner cut from upper margin of front free end-paper, but a very good copy, with the Lavington bookplate on the front paste-down end-paper and the later Wilberforce Library, Backsettown Library on the recto of the front free end-paper. The early Christian writer Sulpicius Severus was influenced by Saint Martin, Bishop of Tours, whose biography he wrote and which is included in this volume, along with his works on sacred history, dialogues, and letters; the dialogues compare Bishop Martin's "miracles" with those of Egyptian Hermits. Willems 430. C. Stancliffe: St. Martin and his Hagiographer. History and Miracle in Sulpicius Severus (1983). R. M. Price: The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, ed. J. Howard-Johnston and P. A. Hayward (1983). (Book ref. 8012)
London: Printed for S. Bladon..., 1772. 2 volumes in 1. Small 8vo, 147 x 89 mms., pp. [ii], vii [viii blank], 156; [ii], 147 [148 blank, 149 - 153 index], contemporary calf, later reback in roan, morocco, new end-papers; corners a bit worn, but a good copy. A short review in The Monthly Review for 1772 commented, "On the whole, these Theatrical Lives, though not of the most exemplary or moral kind, are written in a sprightly, agreeable strain; and the Author seems to have been well furnished with anecdotes proper for such an undertaking: but of the authenticity of these materials, we are not altogether competent judges." Such a sentiment has seldom stopped many reviewers. (Book ref. 7988)
London: Printed for R. and J. Dodsley..., 1760. FIRST EDITION. 8vo, 200 x 122 mms., pp. [iv], 208, including half-title, engraved portrait of Handel as frontispiece, contemporary calf, neatly rebacked, with gilt spine and red morocco label, with armorial bookplate, with motto "Avancez" (?Hamilton Hill) on front paste-down end-paper. The blank leaf before the half-title has the contemporary autograph "R. Chambre" on the top margin of the recto, and below, "Contents/ Account of the Magdelen [sic]/ Charity/ The Life of Handel." The first item has clearly been excised from the volume at some stage, with slight dislocation of the text block against the spine, hence the rebacking, but a very attractive copy. Mainwaring (1724 - 1807) studied at St. John's College, Cambridge, and was ordained in 1748. He had several collaborators for this work; some of the factual information is from John Christopher Smith, some of it was written by Robert Price, and the list of compositions is by James Harris. It was reviewed and quoted extensively in various contemporary periodicals and is a useful source of information about Handel's life and activities. There is a footnote in the "Observations" to James Harris's Hermes, citing Harris' discussion "with great judgment and accuracy" the "imitative power in Music...." (Book ref. 7953)
London: Printed for R. and J. Dodsley..., 1759. 2 volumes. 8vo, 173 x 102 mms., pp. [vi], viii, [2], 247 [248 blank, 249 - 251 Index, 252 blank' [ii], 250 [251 -256 Index], engraved frontispiece and engraved plate of music after page [248] in volume 1, contemporary calf, spines lettered in gilt; lacks labels, but a good set. Walpole published his Catalogue in 1758, and in the same year sold the copyright to Dodsley, who published 2000 copies of this edition. The reviewer of the first edition in The Critical Review for 1758 objected to some of Walpole's political assessments and assertions, but adds "The execution of the performance before us, we must own, is agreeable and entertaining, animated with pertinent and humourous reflections, and enlivened with some curious anecdotes not commonly known. The author, however, is not free from mistakes, inaccuracies and quaint conceits, which are often mistaken for wit." (Book ref. 7918)
A Avignon, Chez Jean-Albet Joly..., 1812. Small 8vo, 119 x 72 mms., pp. 134 including woodcut frontispiece, original wrappers, uncut; extremities frayed, early reenforcement of spine with cloth. Mandrin (1725 - 1755) is often called the "Robin Hood of France," and there are numerous accounts of his revolt against the tax authorities and his successful career as a smuggler. After numerous escapades and brief encounters with the French militia, he was captured, tried, and put to death by having his arms and legs broken and then tied to a wheel. The first account of his life and adventures was published in the year of his death. The only copy of this edition that I have been able to trace is in the Bibliotheque Nationale. (Book ref. 7883)
Lugd. Batavorum, Ex Officina Hackiana, 1670. 8vo, 180 x 113 mms., pp. [xvi], 844 [845 - 876 Index], including engraved title-page. BOUND WITH: Cornelius Nepotis. Vitae Excellentium Imperatorum, Observationibus ac Notis variorum Uberioribus illustratae, Accurante, Roberto Keuchenio ICto et Historiarum Professore. Lugd. Vatav. et Roterod. Ex Officiana Hackiana 1667. 8v9,m 180 x 113 mms., pp. [xxiv], 377 [378 - 392 Index, including engraved title-page. 2 volumes in 1, bound in contemporary vellum, with yapp edges, with the autograph "Wilhelm von Samson/ Bevall 1800" on the verso of the front free end-paper; spine a little soiled, but a very good copy. The anecdotes and memorable sayings of the rhetorician Valerius (fl. 14AD - 57AD) were popular with later orators and historains; the earliest publication of his works was in Mainz in 1471; the editor, Antoine Thysius (1603 - 1665) was the son of the Dutch theologian of the same name (1556 - 1640) and professor of poetry at the University of Harderwijk. Cornelius Nepos' lives of roman generals was a popular work, and this edition by Robertus Keuchenius (1636 - 1673) is one of many works by him. Dirk Van Miert, in Humanism in an Age of Science: The Amsterdam Athenaeum in the Golden Age (2009) amusingly notes "One has the impression that the ambitions of Robertus Keuchenius...were successful only because he knew how to network. in 1660 he dedicated a hymn to Professor Klenckius to congratulate him on his knighthood. He also addressed a congratulatory poem (1660) to recently re-crowned King Charles II of England." This is the first appearance of his edition of Cornelius; it was republished in 1667. (Book ref. 7880)
London: Printed for Knigh and Lacey..., 1823. FIRST EDITION. 12mo, 195 x 100 mms., pp. xi [xii blank], 151 [152 blank, 153 - 154 Index, 155 - 156 adverts], including half-title, engraved frontispiece (slightly browned and off-setting on title-page), uncut, original boards, paper label on spine, the bottom half of which is defective; other slight wear to binding, but a good copy. The author's narrative about his wife is really her spiritual biography and to a certain extent, his. The wife (no names, even of the children are given) had an early and abiding attraction to Dissent, and especially to Methodism. When they are in London after their marriage, he forms a union "Independent Dissenters," and for the most part the book is about the spirituality of his wife and her wondrous perfection, etc, with perhaps a slight sense of irritation at her single-minded interest in Christianity. A second edition was published in 1824, and a third in 1826. Copac locates copies of the first edition in BL, Bodleian, Exeter, and Warwick. (Book ref. 7860)
London: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1869. FIRST EDITION. 2 volumes. 8vo, 188 x 114 mms., pp. xii, 318; viii, 336 [337 Errrata, 338 blank], including half-title in each volume, engraved portrait of Schubert as frontispiece in volume 1, contemporary half maroon calf, spine gilt in compartments, marbled boards; spines a little rubbed, but a very good set. Kreissle von Hellborn (1812 - 1869) published his biography of Schubert, Aus Schuberts Leben, in 1861, followed by an expanded second edition in 1865; this is the first English translation. Although Kreissle was a great admirer of Schubert and extolled the quality of his music, he more-or-less said that his music was great but his life was dull. A friend of Schubert's, Josef von Spaun (1788 - 1865) disagreed, saying, "The biography contains too little light and too much shadow regarding Schubert as a human being." There are, not surprisingly, many inaccuracies in the biography, but it is one of the most frequently-cited sources in Schubert biographical scholarship. (Book ref. 7782)
In Siena, Appresso gli Heredi de Matteor Florini, 1616. Small 4to, 206 x 140 mms., 40 leaves with the wood-engraved images of 155 Roman emperors, in double columns, engraved vignette on title-page, fore-margin and lower margin of last leaf slightly defective with loss of four letters, but a very good copy, bound in full hard-grain brown morocco by The Club Bindery circa 1900, with gilt dentelles, gilt spine, and the small rectangular red morocco bookplate of Robert Hoe III (1839 - 1909), noted collector and first president of The Grolier Club. Paoli's dates are given in some sources as 1599 - 1630, and the earliest edition of this book that I have traced was published in 1606, which would make him rather precocious. The work was frequently reprinted and was translated into English in 1636, probably by Robert Basset, though the translation is also attributed to Richard Braithwait. (Book ref. 7694)
London: Printed for S. Hooper [Parts 1, 2, and 3]..., 1759, 1759, 1760. FIRST EDITION OF PART THREE. 3 parts in one volume. 12mo,163 x 93 mms., pp. [5], 6 - 132; [5], 6 - 144; [v], vi - xi [xii blank], 234 [235 - 283 adverts], including half-title for each part. BOUND WITH: The Authentic Memoirs of the Countess de Barre, the French King's Mistress, Carefully collated from a Manuscript in the Possession of the Dutchess of Villeroy. By Sir Francis N------. The Second Edition. London: Printed for the Editors, and sold by J. Roson....and G. Reilly..., 1771. 12mo, 163 x 93 mms., pp. [ii], 216. 2 volumes in 1, bound in contemporary lightly mottled calf, gilt borders on covers, spine ornately gilt in compartments to a floral motif, red and olive morocco labels; corners worn, upper rear joint slightly cracked, but a good to very good copy, with the contemporary bookplate of J. Spencer Smith on the front paste-down end-paper. The History of the Marchioness de Pompadour was also published in 1759 in French and German with Hooper's imprint, though the German edition was printed in Germany and the French probably in Holland. The work is classified as a biography in ESTC. The Work with which it is bound, The Authentic Memoirs of the Countess de Barre, is a novel, and a slightly erotic one at that. Both works are uncommon. ESTC N66689 locates a copy of the 1759 second edition of The History of the Marchioness de Pompadour in Chicago; for a second edition of 1760, ESTC T190245 locates copies in Cambridge and the Sorbonne. A third edition, 1760, of the first part is found in Cambridge and Salem Athenaeum. I could not find a first edition in English of The Authentic Memoirs of the Countess de Barre; ESTC T67755 locates copies of this second edition in the BL and Bodleian only. (Book ref. 7649)
London: Printed for W. Innys..., and R. Manby and H. S. Cox..., 1750. 3 volumes. 8vo, 201 x 121 mms., pp. xl, 423 [424 adverts], [ii], 438; [iv], 380, xl, engraved and printed title-pages in volume 1, contemporary speckled calf, spines gilt in compartments, morocco labels; page 422 misprinted as page 481 in volume, some slight marginal worming in lower margin of first 4 leaves in volume 2 not affecting text, bindings a little dried, spines very slightly faded, but generally a very good and attractive set with the contemporary autograph "W Radcliffe... 1753" on the top margin of the engraved title-page in volume, and on the top margins of the title-pages in volumes 2 and 3 and on the frton paste-down end-paper of each volume Middleton (1683 - 1750) published this work in 1741 in two handsome quarto volumes. It was a great success, and Middleton's earnings increased significantly. This fourth edition was published in the year of Middleton's death and presumably contains some revisions from earlier editions. Although Middleton was accused, to some extent accurately, of plariazing De tribus luminibus Romanorum (1634), by William Bellenden, this book gave him lasting fame. John Dussinger remarks in his ODNB notice that " His biography of Cicero was a benchmark in what has been called 'the rise of modern paganism' (Gay, title-page). Passing through nine editions within the eighteenth century and numerous other editions and reprints in the nineteenth century, it was his most enduring literary achievement. Probably a large part of its appeal derives from its providing an ideal of good citizenship and political independence for aspirants in the British parliamentary system. For instance when in 1790 Nicolas de Azara, the Spanish ambassador in Rome, published a lavishly illustrated Spanish translation it was well received, and in 1804 it was reprinted. The Spain of the Enlightenment needed a model to emulate, and Middleton's Life of Cicero provided the text." (Book ref. 7644)
Bologna Dalla Stamperia di Lelio dalla Volpe, 1776. FIRST EDITION. 8vo, 186 x 114 mms., pp. [5] 6 - 85 [86 blank, 87 errata, 88 - 90 blank], engraved portrait of Montecuccoli as frontispiece, text within borders, contemporary sheepskin, gilt borders to a Greek key design on covers; bookplate crudely removed from front paste-down end-paper, top and base of spine slightly worn, some slight general wear to binding, but a very good copy. The Italian poet and economist Agostino Paradisi (1736 - 1783) was a prolific author, and this tribute to Count Raimondo Montecuccoli (1609 - 1780) is very finely printed and was frequently reprinted. The preface is by the publisher, and the work includes Lettre du comte Paradisi à sa majesté le roi de Prusse, en lui envoyant son éloge du prince Montecuccoli. - Réponse de sa majesté. Montecuccoli was himself a distinguished military general: "Unequalled as a master of 17th-century warfare, Montecuccoli excelled in the art of fortification and siege, march and countermarch, and cutting his enemy's lines of communications. In advocating standing armies, he clearly foresaw future trends in the military field" (Wikiepedia). (Book ref. 7630)
Edinburgh: Printed for James Sawers [by R. Chapman, Glasgow]..., 1818. 4 volumes. 12mo, `158 x 90 mms., pp. [iv], xxiv, 311 [312 blank]; [iv], 310; [iv], 336; [iv], 314, engraved portrait of Johnson (by E. Mitchell after Reynolds), dated 1818 as frontispiece in volume 1, contemporary calf, gilt borders on covers, gilt spines, black leather labels (chipped), marbled end-papers; spines a bit rubbed but a good set. William Cowper was not quite as enthusiastic as many about Johnson's magnum opus. Writing to William Unwin in 1779, he remarked, "I have been well entertained with Johnson's biography, for which I thank you: with ne exception, and that a swingeing one, I think he has acquitted himself with his usual good sense and sufficiency. His treatment of Milton is unmerciful to the last degree. A pensioner is not likely to spare a republican; and the Doctor, in order, I suppose, to convince his royal patron of the sincerity of his monarchial principles, has belaborued that great poet's character with the most industrious cruelty." Foxon 79.4LP/28a. This edition was re-issued in London in 1819, with cancel title-pages. (Book ref. 7626)
London: Printed for G. Sael...and sold by M. Poole and Son, Chester, 1798. 12mo, 172 x 97 mms., pp. viii, 207 [208 adverts], engraved frontispiece, contemporary sheepskin; joints cracked, spine slightly creased, with top and base chipped. The first edition appeared in the same year, but seems to have been slightly shorter, with only 192 pages of text. The biographical subjects include Joseph Addison, Francis Bacon, William Beckford, Sir Francis Drake, Benjamin Franklin, Jonas Hanway, David Hartley, James Hervey, William Jones, Samuel Johnson, John Locke, John Milton, Isaac Newton, Alexander Pope, William Shakespeare, etc. In the preface to this second edition, Sael notes that a "life of the celebrated Gainsborough has been substituted for one of less importance." In fact, the life omitted from this second edition is that of the printer William Strahan (1715 - 1785). Painters yes, printers no. ESTC T110355 on-line locates three copies of this second edition: BL; Yale; McMaster; for the first edition, ESTC T110356 locates copies in BL, Bodleian; Folger; University of Otago. (Book ref. 7505)
London: Printed for the Booksellers; and for J. Kendrew, Collier-Gate, York [no date], [1812]. 12mo, 184 x 113 mms., pp. 72, engraved portrait frontispiece "Publish'd by J. Kendrew...1812," original printed wrappers, uncut and stitched as issued; rather the worse for wear, with covers soiled, part of spine missing, corners creased, and edges soiled and crushed. Metcalf (1717 - 1810) published this account of his life in 1795, and it was frequently reprinted after that. A bout of smallpox rendered him blind when he was six, but he had an extraordinary career. Among other accomplishments, he was responsible for developing and building some of the best roads in England. No copies traced in UK libraries; WorldCat locates copies in Yale, Indiana, and the Library of Congress. (Book ref. 7352)
London: Printed by R. Hett, for the Authors; and sold by him at Grove-House, Mile-End..., 1784. FIRST AND ONLY EDITION. Large 8vo, 225 x 140 mms., pp. xxix [xxx Errata], 428, including 17 pages of subscribers, original boards, uncut, many leaves unopened; boards detached, edges a bit soiled, ex-library. The Independent minister Stephen Addington (1729 - 1796) was a prolific author, writing textbooks on arithmetic, geography, and Greek grammar, not to mention a number of works on religious and moral themes. Addington notes that most of what is known about Paul's life derives from the Book of Acts. Before Addington's work, the earliest modern biography of Paul appears to be that Antoine Godeau (1605 - 1672), translated into English in 1653. James Macknight (1721 - 1800) published his History of the Life of the Apostle Paul in 1795. ESTC T89161 locates copies in Aberdeen, BL, Congregational Library, and Southampton in these islands; John Hopkins, Library of Congress, and Yale in North America. (Book ref. 7291)
London: Printed for W. Strahan; and T. Cadell..., 1777. FIRST EDITION, first issue. Small 8vo, 159 x 96 mms., pp. [iv], iv, 62, contemporary marbled boards, new leather spine; short tear in fore-margin of half-title, issued without portrait, lacks final adverts leaf. With the small rectangular bookplate of John Sparrow on the upper margin of the front paste-down end-paper. The first issue of Hume's autobiography with the correct reading "myself" on page 27, line 3. Todd's "a" edition. (Book ref. 7165)
London: John Murray..., 1817. FIRST EDITION. 8vo, 212 x 130 mms., pp. xv [xvi translator's note], 496, including engraved leaf of music, contemporary half calf, gilt spine, black morocco label, marbled boards; some light foxing but a very good copy. Marie-Henri Beyle (1783 - 1842) apparently used over one hundred pseudonyms, but he is best-known as Stendhal, even though that pseudonym doesn't appear on the title-page. As Copac notes, "The life of Haydn is a plagiarism of G. Carpani's Le Haydine; the biographical part of the Mozart is, practically, a reproduction of Winckler's Notice biographique sur Jean-Chrysostom-Wolfgang-Théophile Mozart, which in turn is a translation of Schlichtegroll's Mozarts Leben; the last letter of the Mozart and the letter on Metastasio are Bombet." William Gardiner (1770 - 1853) was the compiler/author of Sacred Melodies (1812 - 1838). (Book ref. 7163)