(London: John C. Nimmo, 1893). 229 x 152 mm. (9 x 6"). Three volumes.
Attractive scarlet half morocco over cloth boards, raised bands, spine gilt in ruled compartments, marbled endpapers, top edge gilt. Frontispiece facsimile of engraved title page of the sixth edition. Title pages printed in red and black. One leaf with two small tears at foot, one opening with very minor spotting in fore margin, otherwise the attractively bound set in excellent condition.
Characterized by sensitivity, common sense, and humor, this wide-ranging work, first printed in 1621 and much revised over time, is by design and arrangement a medical treatise examining the various melancholias and their cures, and it is probably the most famous medical work ever undertaken by a layman. At the same time, it is a great storehouse of miscellaneous learning, telling us at least as much about the age in which it was composed as about the purported subject of the work. From the time that Burton (1577-1640) matriculated at Brasenose College at Oxford in 1593 until the end of his life, he was a constant denizen of the Bodleian Library, a precinct for learning surpassed at the time only by the Vatican. "Perhaps the world has never known a more burrowing bookworm than Burton; certainly it has never known a more interesting one than this assiduous delver into the quaint and fascinating lore of all times. If all ancient and Elizabethan literature were lost, we could derive a rather clear notion of their contents from the voluminous references and quotations in the 'Anatomy.'" (Day). (ST15557-31)
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PJP Catalog: RCVF20.016