(London: John Camden Hotten, 1867). 172 x 112 mm. (6 3/4 x 4 3/8"). 66 pp. (bound without the 8 leaves of ads). FIRST EDITION.
Pleasing late 19th century wine red crushed morocco, gilt, covers with border of gilt hearts accented by dots and quatrefoils, upper cover with titling in the head and tail of frame, smooth spine with vertical titling, gilt-ruled turn-ins, top edge gilt. Wise 38. Board tending to splay just slightly, a hint of rubbing to joints and extremities, isolated minor marginal smudges, otherwise an excellent copy, clean and fresh in a lustrous binding.
This small, simple, yet pretty binding in outstanding condition is the perfect enclosure for the lyrical poems contained within. Swinburne (1837-1909) was a virtuoso of verse, able to produce dazzling and enthralling lines in a wide range of meters and stanzaic forms. He was also a shocking pagan in terms of the content of his poetry, a significant portion of which was erotic. This work marked a move away from the fiercely personal content of his early work, and focused instead on his republican political interests. Swinburne's "Song of Italy" is dedicated to Giuseppe Mazzini (1805-72), an Italian politician, activist, journalist, and staunch republican, proponent of a unified Italy. (ST14208)
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