CHARLES KINGSLEY’S COPY OF ARTHUR HELPS’ THOUGHTS UPON GOVERNMENT, 1872 FIRST EDITION
(KINGSLEY, Charles) HELPS, Arthur. Thoughts upon Government. London: Bell and Daldy, 1872. Octavo, original brick-red pebbled cloth. $600.
First edition, from the library of noted author Charles Kingsley, with his initials on the half title. Also with an autograph note signed by Helps tipped in.
In 1860 Helps was named Clerk of the Privy Council, a post he held until his death in 1875. “Thrown by his office into personal intercourse with Queen Victoria, she learnt to appreciate his high qualities, and found in him a staunch, thoughtful and capable adviser. The queen entrusted him with the revision of Prince Albert’s speeches and with the preparation for the press of her Leaves from the Journal of Our Life in the Highlands in 1868, and of her Mountain, Loch and Glen, 1869” (DNB). Helps’ considerable literary output included histories, fiction and collections of essays (as the present work). The autograph note by Helps, on Privy Council Office embossed stationery, reads: “Please allow the bearers to consult some books for me in your library. Arthur Helps, Oct 7/71,” apparently addressed to the Librarian of the London Library. This copy from the library of Charles Kingsley, the “energetic country parson” perhaps best known for his stories for children. He was also involved throughout his life with socialist and other progressive movements, and many of his books have a reformist bent: “his writings were marked by a fervid and genuine enthusiasm on behalf of the poor” (DNB).
Publisher’s cloth near-fine.