(New York: Harper & Brothers, 1870). 235 x 152 mm. (9 1/4 x 6"). Three volumes.
VERY PRETTY DECORATIVE CONTEMPORARY HALF CALF, raised bands, spines handsomely gilt in double-ruled compartments with bands of tangent concentric circles at top and bottom, delicate inner frame with curling and dotted borders and looping cornerpieces, the whole enclosing a central wheel design formed by fleurs-de-lys, marbled boards, edges, and endpapers. With frontispiece portraits. Boards a little chafed, small area of discoloration at head of one spine, neat repair to fore edge of one leaf, occasional minor foxing, otherwise a fine set, with clean, fresh text and scarcely worn bindings that make a very pleasing appearance on the shelf.
An immediate bestseller upon its publication in 1856, this first major work by Motley examines what the author described as "one of the leading events of modern times": Holland's successful challenge to the "ecclesiastical tyranny" of the Holy Roman Empire. It was acclaimed by critics and was quickly translated into Dutch, German, and Russian. This work is not difficult to locate in one edition or another, but it will not be found in bindings that are a great deal more pleasing that the ones covering our set. (ST11462a-100)