EXTRA-ILLUSTRATED ALDINE EDITION OF YOUNG'S POEMS, EXQUISITELY BOUND
YOUNG, Edward. The Poetical Works. New York and London: (Chiswick Press), circa 1892. Two volumes. 12mo, contemporary full crimson morocco, elaborately gilt-decorated spines and covers with floral designs incorporating blue, green and white morocco inlays, green morocco-gilt doublures with red morocco inlays in a floral design, raised bands, watered silk endpapers, all edges gilt. $1600.
Later Aldine edition of the poems of Edward Young, including his immortal long poem Night Thoughts, with portrait of the poet and extra-illustrated with ten window-mounted engravings, four hand-colored, splendidly bound in full morocco-gilt with multi-colored morocco inlays in floral designs.
"Pursuing consolation for the loss of his stepdaughter in 1736 and his wife and son-in-law in 1740, Young wrote The Complaint, or, Night-Thoughts on Life, Death, and Immortality (1742–6), arguably the century's greatest long poem. Its nine 'Nights,' issued serially in quartos tending to greater length, total nearly 10,000 lines of blank verse. The first of these maintain the quasi-autobiographical fiction of a nocturnal speaker lamenting the loss of child, spouse, and friend and finding Christian consolation… Over 100 collected editions of the Night-Thoughts were published in the next five decades, including translations in most European languages… Illustrated by Blake and read closely by Wordsworth and Coleridge, the poem remained popular well into the 1800s… Young has retained an importance that is also ensured by his friendships with writers as diverse as Pope, Johnson, and Richardson and his contemporaries' admiration, summed up by Johnson's judgment that Young 'was a man of genius and a poet'" (ODNB). Includes a Life of Young. The "Aldine" edition of British poets, first brought out by the publisher William Pickering beginning in 1830, aimed to introduce scholarly editions of the classics in a smaller, more affordable format.
A splendidly bound, extra-illustrated set in fine condition.