London: Richard Bentley, 1846. Leech, John. 2nd Edition. Hardcover. Sixmo size, 71 pp., extra-illustrated, with a signed letter from the author. Good +. Item #15060801
The second "new" edition of this comic look at mid-19th century "Evening Parties", which enabled the eligible young men and ladies to meet each other in a socially acceptable situation; a prior owner notation states that the second edition is the "best edition". This volume from the libraries of Frederick Hendriks, Campbell L. Hendriks, and McKinstry, with their attractive bookplates.
This book was loved by its prior owners and is extra-illustrated with numerous tipped-in plates, with a two-page tipped-in letter by the author, recipient unknown, responding it seems to a request for Albert Smith to review a manuscript with a view to soliciting his advice regarding publication. The letter is undated, save by "Saturday", and is signed with his full name. The letter is small in size and has creases from folding to form an envelope; on the verso it is addressed to him at Bentley's.
Albert Richard Smith (1816-1860) was both an author as well as an explorer; he contributed to "Punch", Bentley's "Miscellany" and wrote novels as well as plays. In 1849 he took a trip to Constantinople and the Near East, and in 1851 he ascended Mont Blanc; the book he wrote about this expedition, and the "talks" he gave to the public concerning it, helped to popularize mountain climbing in mid-Victorian Britain. With illustrations by John Leech (1817-1864), who is perhaps best known for having illustrated many of Charles Dickens' works including "A Christmas Carol" and the humorous looks at history in "Comic History of England" and "Comic History of Rome."
___DESCRIPTION: Contemporary half calf and brown diaper cloth covered boards, all edges marbled, marbled endpapers, three tipped-in plates (one in blue on yellow paper), the two-page tipped-in ms letter as described above, engraved frontis, forty-one engravings in text, engraved initials, vintage bookseller ticket on the rear pastedown (B.F. Hardwick, Bradford); sixmo size (6 5/8" by 4 1/4"), [1-7] 8-71 pp., second edition.
____CONDITION: A good copy; internally bright with very little foxing, condition issues mainly concern the binding which is a bit worn along the edges at the corners, head and foot of the spine, and the joints with the front board beginning to detach at the tail, while the text block remains tight; overall a very good copy internally which needs a bit of restoration to the binding, unique with extra-illustrations, a letter, and three attractive bookplates.
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