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Book Description
‘THE BEST BOOK OF SERMONS I HAVE READ FOR YEARS. SO PLEASE GO ON PREACHING TO US, REVEREND DAWKINS, AND DON'T MIND THE THINGS THEY THROW AT YOU’ - FROM THE LIBRARY OF DARWIN'S GREAT-GRANDSON STEPHEN KEYNES

Octavo (196 x 128mm), pp. viii, [2 (dedication, blank)], 310. Illustrations in the text. (Some light marginal toning.) Original colour-printed wrappers. (Extremities lightly rubbed, spine slightly faded and bumped at head.) A very good copy.

Provenance: Stephen John Keynes OBE, FLS (1927-2017, loosely-inserted paper slip with manuscript reading notes and occasional underlining and marking).
Dealer Notes
First wrappers edition. According to the ‘Author’s Note’, A Devil’s Chaplain ‘constitutes a personal selection, made by the Editor Latha Menon, from among all the articles and lectures, reflections and polemics, book reviews and forewords, tributes and eulogies’ (‘Author’s Note’, p. 1) written by the evolutionary biologist, and renowned and controversial author Richard Dawkins. The 32 pieces (some of them previously unpublished or revised for this volume) date from the last quarter of the 20th century and the first years of the 21st centuries, and have been arranged into seven sections: ‘Science and Sensibility’, ‘Light Will be Thrown’, ‘The Infected Mind’, ‘They Told Me, Heraclitus’, ‘Even the Ranks of Tuscany’, ‘There is All Africa and Her Prodigies in Us’, and ‘A Prayer for my Daughter’. Each section is prefaced by a new preamble.

The book’s title was taken from a letter written by Darwin to Hooker in 1856: ‘[w]hat a book a Devil’s Chaplain might write on the clumsy, wasteful, blundering low and horridly cruel works of nature’. Richard Holloway, Bishop of Edinburgh, concluded his review of A Devil’s Chaplain with the words: ‘[t]his is the best book of sermons I have read for years. So please go on preaching to us, Reverend Dawkins, and don't mind the things they throw at you. After all, prophets always get stoned’ (The Guardian, 15 February 2003). The first edition of 2003 was followed in 2004 by the present wrappers edition.

Although not marked as such, this copy is from the library of the noted bibliophile and collector Stephen Keynes, the great-grandson of Charles Darwin. Stephen Keynes was a fellow of the Linnean Society (where Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace’s papers enunciating the theory of evolution were first read), and the founder and chairman of the Charles Darwin Trust. He has marked or underlined a number of passages in the volume and made reading notes on a loosely-inserted slip of paper headed ‘Devil’s Chaplain’.

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We have a number of works on evolution and Darwin from the library of Stephen Keynes. Please check our other listings or our website for details: https://www.typeandforme.com/index.php/2020/11/06/natural-history/
Author DAWKINS, Richard and Latha MENON (editor)
Date 2004
Publisher London: Clays Ltd for Phoenix

Price: £7.50

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