“A MASTERPIECE OF HISTORIC BIOGRAPHY”: HERBERT’S LIFE OF HENRY VIII, 1683
(HENRY VIII) HERBERT, Edward, Lord of Cherbury. The Life and Reign of King Henry the Eighth. London: Printed by Mary Clark, for Ann Mearn, 1683. Folio (7-1/2 by 11-1/2 inches), contemporary full mottled paneled calf neatly rebacked with original spine laid down, raised bands. $1650.
Sixth edition, with frontispiece portrait of Henry VIII, in contemporary calf-gilt.
Courtier, soldier, diplomat, and poet, Herbert began this history of Henry VIII in 1632, drawing on a number of original sources in an effort to vindicate Henry from various slanders by Herbert's contemporaries. Walpole called the Life and Reign "a masterpiece of historic biography" which "throws considerable light upon our legal history… and contains much information which is not to be had elsewhere" (Allibone, 828). The first edition was published in 1649. Wing H1507. Lowndes, 1047. Armorial bookplates.
Minor light embrowning, corners lightly rubbed. A handsome copy in nicely restored contemporary calf-gilt.