“HARD-HEARTED TO THE POOR, AND UNFEELING TO THE SONS OF DISTRESS”: SCARCE CAUTIONARY CHILDREN’S BOOK, 1814
(CHILDREN'S LITERATURE) ANONYMOUS. Village Annals, Containing Austerus and Humanus. A Sympathetic Tale. Philadelphia: Johnson & Warner (Griggs & Dickinson), 1814. 12mo, original pale gray-green wrappers. $425.
First edition of this charming cautionary children’s book on human nature, with wood-engraved frontispiece and six in-text illustrations.
This is an instructional tale of Sir Filmer Hopewell, who, having lost his way, finds a village ale-house, where he hears about two of the town’s stereotypical inhabitants: “Small, however, sir, as the village is, it produces two characters, as opposite almost in their natures, as the darkness of a stormy night is to the splendor of meridian day. These characters as they are unknown to you, allow me to introduce to your acquaintance, under the names of Austerus and Humanus; the former a man of callous soul; the latter one who thinks, and feels while he thinks.” Rosenbach 514. Welch 1381. Shaw & Shoemaker 33546.
A lovely little volume in original wrappers.