Cosmorama; A View of the Costumes and Peculiarities of All Nations

An Overview for Young Readers of the Societies and Customs
Of Indigenous Peoples of the Five Continents and Polynesia…

ASPIN, Jehoshophat. Cosmorama. A View of the Costumes and Peculiarities of All Nations. London: J. Harris, St. Paul's Church-yard, n.d. [1827].

First edition. Tall twelvemo (6 3/16 x 4 in; 169 mm). viii, 404 pp. Eighteen hand-colored engraved plates, each with four illustrations, and imprinted Jan. 1, 1827.

Original quarter roan over printed boards with gilt ornaments to spine. With the bookplate of Marjorie Moon. Some rubbing, wee loss at spine head.

Overview for young readers of the societies and customs of indigenous peoples of the five continents and Polynesia, with illustrations. A popular title, it was reprinted 1834, 1848, 1852, and 1860.

Though well-represented in library holdings, the last first edition copy to come to auction, according to ABPC, was in 2004.

Library notes dating this title to 1826 are in error. The Conclusion is dated "Christmas 1826;" the plates are dated Jan. 1, 1827.

The plates are unsigned but presumably by the author. Jehoshaphat Aspin (fl. 1800 - 1850) was a somewhat mysterious 19th century writer, historian artist, and geographer. It is thought that Jehoshaphat Aspin was the pseudonym of an unidentified female working in what, at the time, was very much a man's world. Aspin's body of work includes a number of histories, children's books, astrology texts, and maps. She is known to have worked with Matthew Carey and C. V. Lavoisne.

Marjorie Moon was the esteemed collector and bibliographer of children's literature whose works include: John Harris's Books for Youth 1801-1843; Benjamin Tabart's Juvenile Library. A bibliography of books for children published, edited and sold by Mr. Tabart, 1801-1820; The Children's Books of Mary Belson Elliott Blending Sound Christian Principles with Cheerful Cultivation. A Bibliography; and Childhood Recollected: Early Children's Books from the Library of Marjorie Moon.

Osborne Coll., p. 178, Moon, M. Harris (1992) 26(1). Item #02544

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