Crown Edition of British Poets, The

In A Lovely Art Nouveau Binding

[BINDING]. CHATTERTON, Thomas. The Crown Edition of British Poets. London: British Literary Society, 1895.

Limited to twenty-five copies, this being copy no. 5. Two octavo volumes (6 11/16 x 4 in; 170 x 102 mm). cvii, [1], 379, [1]; xlvi , [2], 345, [1] pp. Portrait frontispiece.

Bound in full contemporary crushed olive morocco (unsigned) with double fillet border and gilt foliate frame with red and ivory floral onlays. Gilt-ruled turn-ins with corner pieces. Crimson morocco doublures with gilt crown with purple onlays. Red silk endleaves. Top edge gilt. With the bookplate of Hannah M. Standish. Minimal fading to spines, still a very fine set. Housed in two black morocco fleece-lined slipcases.

"Of all English poets, Thomas Chatterton (1752-1770) seemed to his great Romantic successors most to typify a commitment to the life of imagination. His poverty and untimely suicide represented the martyrdom of the poet by the materialistic society of his time. William Wordsworth, listing in “Resolution and Independence” (1807) those poets to whom he owed most, describes Chatterton as 'the marvellous Boy / The sleepless Soul that perished in his pride.'

"Chatterton, for a variety of reasons to a large extent relating to the state of letters in his time, achieved the status of a myth. This is not to discount his formidable influence on English, French, and German literature through his 'Rowley' poems, which he attributed to a fifteenth-century Bristol priest, Thomas Rowley" (The Poetry Foundation). Rowley was the product of Chatterton's imagination. Item #02418

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