(London: Printed for W. Owens, 1754). 205 x 122 mm. (8 x 5"). 2 p.l., xxxii, 33-240, xxviii, 14 pp., [1] leaf (ads). FIRST EDITION.

Contemporary sprinkled calf, raised bands, red morocco label (older repairs to joints). Front pastedown with bookplate of H. Scofield Private Library. Teerink, 1623; ESTC T136704. Two-inch cracks to joints, patches of insect activity to boards, extremities a bit rubbed, opening and closing leaves with typical offsetting from turn-in glue, gutter open at title page, occasional faint foxing or other trivial defects, but still an excellent copy, the text quite clean and crisp, and in a solid binding.

This is a well-preserved copy in a period binding of an anonymously published satire of contemporary politics and religion, written in the form of allegorical essays, accompanied by a 14-page "advertisement" explaining the allusions. The unnamed author was William King (1685-1763), head of St. Mary Hall college at Oxford and one of the most renowned orators of the day. According to DNB, his Latin oration at a college installation roused Samuel Johnson to "clap his hands until they were sore." King was also the author of a number of political satires in Latin verse, and a friend and correspondent of the greatest satirist of the day, Jonathan Swift. Pages 81-89 here include "The Answer, by Dr. Swift," a poem responding to Robert Lindsay's "Paulus" (also included), noting that it was "never published in any edition of the Dean's works." Teerink affirms that this is the poem's first appearance in print; the volume is desirable to the Swift collector for that reason. King's verses here show the Jacobite sympathies for which he was known, and include "The Paper Mill," "The Roscrucians or Knights of the Rosy Cross," "The Court of Judicature or Temple of Mercury," "The Temple of Health," "Pallantis or the City of Pallas with an account of the Onocentaurs," "The Temple of Hercules," and "Postscript." The present copy was once in the collection of Civil War General Hiram Scofield (1830-1906), who assembled one of the largest private libraries in the United States.

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PJP Catalog: 74.118


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