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Book Description

FIRST EDITION. 8vo. 4.75 x 7.25 inches. [12] + 88 + 79 + [1] + 56 + 77-140 + 104 pp. The Richard Hooker life has irregular pagination but the text is continuous. Separate dated title pages, pagination and register for each life; separate dated title page for Letters Written by Mr. George Herbert...John Donne, but pagination and register here continuous. Blank pages, A1 and A8 at beginning omitted as usual. Illustrated by 4 copperplate portrait plates, including frontispiece. Decorated by title page and headpiece vignettes and by initials. Bound in later eighteenth century style half mottled calf over marbled boards, with new endpapers; spine in compartments with raised bands, with contrasting maroon morocco title label, gilt. Ink corrections on a number of pages, possibly by Walton himself. A very good copy.
Dealer Notes
The first collected edition of Izaak Walton’s biographies of four poets and divines; John Donne, poet and later Dean of St Pauls, Sir Henry Wotton, poet, diplomat and politician, Richard Hooker, priest, theologian and author Of the Lawes of Ecclesiastical Politie and George Herbert, priest and poet. All the biographies, except that of Wotton, also appeared as separate publications from 1635-70. This copy appears to be one of those containing manuscript corrections, very probably by Walton himself. John Butt noted in an article of 1930: ‘Walton formed a habit, pleasing to collectors, of leaving his mark upon those copies of the Lives which passed through his hands.’
Butt undertook an informal census of copies and identified over 20 copies with holograph corrections.
There are 16 manuscript corrections in this copy, 11 of which are listed in the errata list and 5 are not. It is the unlisted corrections that indicate that they could well be the author or someone intimately aquatinted with the text, some of these are words written in the margin; however there are too few words to make any meaningful comparison with Walton’s handwriting. They are defiantly contemporary with the book and the corrections that are not listed on the errata are quite a compelling argument
for them being by the author, rather than a reader just correcting the items on the errata list. Keynes in his Bibliography of Dunne says ‘It will be noticed that three of the copies [recorded by him] have corrections in Walton’s hand.’ p240.
Author WALTON, IZAAK.
Date 1670
Publisher Printed by Tho. Newcomb for Richard Marriott.
Condition A very good copy

Price: £1450.00

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