Canterbury Tales


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CHAUCER (TYRWHITT, Thomas, editor). The Canterbury Tales. London: W. Pickering, 1822. Five volumes. Octavo, early 20th-century full navy morocco gilt, raised bands, marbled endpapers, top edges gilt.

Early 19th-century Tyrwhitt edition of Chaucer’s classic—"the best-edited English Classic that ever has appeared"—with frontispiece portrait of Chaucer and engraving of "The Canterbury Pilgrimage" after the famous painting by Thomas Stothard in Volume I, handsomely bound in full morocco-gilt by Bayntun.

In preparing his groundbreaking edition, first published in 1775, Tyrwhitt consulted roughly 25 manuscripts of Chaucer's Tales. "Tyrwhitt's edition has enjoyed the highest reputation, and the estimation in which it has been held is in great part deserved, and ought to be permanent" (Child). "It was considered 'the best-edited English Classic that ever has appeared,' and Professor Skeat in his edition (1894) speaks of it 'as a work of high literary value, to which I am greatly indebted for many necessary notes.' As late as 1891, his notes and glossary were condensed and arranged under the text in the edition of Chaucer in Sir John Lubbock's Hundred Books" (DNB). With an essay on Chaucer's language and versification, as well as an introduction, notes and a glossary, all by Tyrwhitt. Owner ink signature.

A fine, handsome set of this esteemed edition.

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