“WIT, ELOQUENCE, FANCY, SPRANG UP LIKE FLOWERS AFTER RAIN”
WHARTON, Grace. The Literature of Society. London: Tinsley Brothers, 1862. Two volumes. Octavo, early 20th-century three-quarter crimson morocco, raised bands, marbled boards and endpapers, top edges gilt. $600.
First edition of this wonderful survey of the works, lives and times of the great English writers from the time of Chaucer through the late 18th century, handsomely bound.
Wharton’s chronological survey begins with Chaucer and Sidney and moves through Dryden, Defoe, Swift and Johnson. In addition to profiling the major figures, she also discusses the origin of newspapers, the development of periodical writing, the important letter writers, the influence of royal patronage, the origin of fiction, and the formation and function of literary cliques.
Minor repair to title page of Volume II. A lovely set in fine condition.