Item #2596 The Faerie Queene. EDMUND SPENSER.
The Faerie Queene
The Faerie Queene

The Faerie Queene

EXTREMELY RARE FIRST EDITION OF BOTH PARTS of The Faerie Queene, one of the foundational works of English Literature.

"Spenser was considered in his day to be the greatest of English poets, who had glorified England and its language by his long allegorical poem The Faerie Queene, just as Virgil had glorified Rome and the Latin tongue by his epic poem the Aeneid. Spenser had a strong influence upon his immediate successors, and the sensuous features of his poetic style, as well as his nine-line stanza form, were later admired and imitated by such poets as Lord Byron and Percy Bysshe Shelley in the Romantic period of the late 18th and early 19th centuries. He is widely studied today as one of the chief begetters of the English literary Renaissance and as a master who embodied in poetic myth a view of the virtuous life in a Christian universe" (A. Kent Hieatt, Britannica).

With woodcut device on each title and woodcut of St. George and the Dragon on M5v of volume I. With dedication to Queen Elizabeth printed on title verso. Part I has the following issue points: the imprint has the first digit of the date under r in for; page 309 is correctly numbered; p.332 in the earlier state with the Welsh words in lines 4 and 5 not printed, spaces being left for them to be filled in by hand; quire Qq follows Pp8 (with errata on verso). Leaf X7 (p.331/332) repeated.

The Faerie Queene. Disposed into twelve books, fashioning XII. Morall Vertues [contains Books 1-3]. London: [John Wolf] for William Ponsonbie, 1590. –. The Second Part of the Faerie Qveene, containing the Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Bookes. London: [Richard Field] for William Ponsonby, 1596. Quarto (182x125 mm), superb full nineteenth century red crushed morocco by Lloyd (with binder’s stamp), rebacked with original spines laid down. Elaborately gilt-decorated spines, gilt-ruled boards, gilt dentelles, marbled endpapers, all edges gilt. Faint residue barely visible on front board of vol 1. Marbled free endpaper to vol 1 neatly detached; volume 2 endpaper discreetly rehinged. Handsome bookplate of Ross Winans in each volume. Text closely cropped with a few headlines shaved towards the end of vol 2. A little toning to titles (as usual), but overall text exceptionally clean.

Price: $55,000 .

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