February 2022 Catalogue

Rare First Edition Of Price’s Civil Liberty, 1776, A Seminal Influence On American Independence 41. PRICE, Richard. Observations on the Nature of Civil Liberty, The Principles of Government, and the Justice and Policy of the War in America. London, 1776. Slim octavo, full period-style speckled brown sheep gilt. $4800. Click for more info First edition of Price’s powerfully influential British defense of the American revolution, a work of crucial importance in “determining the Americans to declare their independence” (ODNB). A close friend of Benjamin Franklin and John Adams, Richard Price “was the most influential British advocate of American independence” (Howes P586). His Observations on the Nature of Civil Liberty stands as the most important writing by an Englishman sympathetic to the American cause, for “the encouragement derived from this book had no inconsiderable share in determining the Americans to declare their independence” (DNB). In 1778, Price was offered the singular honor of United States citizenship. This rare first edition, which precedes the first American edition, is reportedly one of only 1000 copies published in London in February 1776 and sold out within three days. With half title, often lacking. Adams 76-118a. Adams, American Independence 224a. Sabin 65452. ESTC T10138. Goldsmiths 11512. Kress 7243. Half title with contemporary owner signature dated 1776. Text very fresh and crisp, beautifully bound. “Next to the introduction of Christianity among mankind, the American revolution may prove the most important step in the progressive course of human improvement.” February 2022 – 42 – Bauman Rare Books