"THE CLEAREST OF ALL EXPOSITIONS OF THE BASIC PRINCIPLES OF DEMOCRACY" (PMM): PAINE’S RIGHTS OF MAN, PARTS I & II, 1791-1792
PAINE, Thomas. Rights of Man. BOUND WITH: Part the Second. London, 1791, 1792.
Extremely rare editions of both parts of Paine's revolutionary classic Rights of Man. The exceptionally rare and desirable first edition, second issue of Part I, consisting of the text sheets from the famous suppressed first issue printed by Paine's original publisher, Joseph Johnson (withdrawn by him on the day of publication because of British government intimidation), which were rescued by Paine and his friends, and the new title page and preface printed by Paine's new publisher, J.S. Jordan; bound together with the eighth edition of Part II. Rights of Man, issued same year as its first edition, one of Paine's most important, influential, and best-selling works—"the clearest of all expositions on the basic principles of democracy" (PMM) and "one of the most ardent and clear defenses of human rights, liberty, and equality in any language" (Fruchtman)—Paine hoped the work "would do for England what his Common Sense had done for America" (Gimbel), but it resulted in the prosecution of Paine, his publishers and booksellers, and forced Paine to flee to France. Especially rare in contemporary half calf and marbled boards. $26,000.