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Book Description

First editions. 3 volumes bound in 2. Printed and Sold for J March. Norwich & J S Jordan, Fleet Street. London. 1795. 8vo. Title pages to each volume bearing the spear and defiant cap of liberty, together with the insignia of Libertas. vi, 310, (2)pp; 318, (2)pp; (bl.), 41-318, (2)pp. Lacking b-f: 1-40 [On Habeas Corpus, which was censored due to the political intervention and government persecution known as the "gagging acts", the Seditious Meetings Act and the Treasonable Practices Act]. Recent quarter calf, marbled boards, spines in six compartments with raised banding and gilt lettering. Bookplates to ffep's. Small red ink inscription to titles. Occasional spotting, mottling to title page of Volume II, ink stain to gutter margin of index vol III. Published by Thomas Paine's publisher, J S Jordan. Contributors were identified only by initial or pseudonym to escape prosecution. Rare. ESTC P2535 The Preface reads: "No work in the English language, perhaps, ever appeared to the world under circumstances more inauspicious and depressing than the Cabinet... the giant arm of a ferocious and unrelenting despotism threatened destruction to the defenders of liberty and truth". 1794 The British Treason Trials/French Revolution. Norwich at this time was know as "The Jacobin City", such was its reputation for dissent. Many saw the dissenters as traitors. Known radicals were harassed, and many were arrested. The suspension of Habeas Corpus, an ancient legal right, and the subsequent censorship of the article in this publication on Habeas Corpus was evidence of Government corruption. Laws were passed which restricted press freedom and freedom of assembly. The Cabinet was published by J S Jordan, Thomas Paine's publisher, (subsequently tried and imprisoned). It published articles taking an anti government stance, advocating human rights. Thomas Paine, a Norfolk man, gave the manuscript of The Rights of Man to publisher Joseph Johnson. A visit by government agents dissuaded Johnson, so Paine gave the book to the publisher J.S. Jordan, then went to Paris, on William Blake's advice. The Rights of Man continues to face challenges today for its "subversive" and "radical" ideas, and remains one of history's most banned political narratives. ODNB. Penelope Corfield and Walter Graham have identified a number of the many contributors: including William Taylor, Amelia Opie, Charles Marsh, Olaudah Equiano, John Pitchford, Henry Crabb Robinson, John Taylor, Sir William Jones, Edward Rigby, Thomas Starling Norgate, Annabella Plumtree etc. etc. Corfield, Penelope J. The case of The Cabinet: did Mary Wollstonecraft join the Norwich radicals? The Times Literary Supplement ISSN: 0307-661X 1997 Issue 4903. Corfield, Penelope J & Evans, C. Youth and Revolution in the 1790's. Sutton. 1996.
Author A Society of Gentlemen
Date 1795
Binding Quarter calf, marbled boards
Publisher Printed and Sold for J March. Norwich & J S Jordan, Fleet Street. London.
Pages vi,310,(2);318,(2);(bl.),41-318,(2)

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