Item #05674 English Spy, The. Robert CRUIKSHANK, Bernard BLACKMANTLE, Charles Molloy WESTMACOTT, Thomas ROWLANDSON.
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The
English Spy, The

English Spy, The

London: Sherwood, Jones, and Co., 1825-26. Item #05674

Nineteenth Century Hush-Hush
The Private Lives of Celebrities
With Portraits by R. Cruikshank and Rowlandson

CRUIKSHANK, Robert, illustrator]. [ROWLANDSON, Thomas, Illustrator]. BLACKMANTLE, Bernard (pseud. of Charles Molloy Westmacott). The English Spy: An Original Work, Characteristic, Satirical, and Humorous. Comprising Scenes and Sketches in Every Rank of Society, Being Portraits of the Illustrious, Eminent, Eccentric, and Notorious. Drawn From the Life by Bernard Blackmantle. The Illustrations designed by Robert Cruikshank. London: Published by Sherwood, Jones, and Co., 1825-26.

First edition, first issue in book form, originally issued in twenty-four parts.

Two tall octavo volumes (9 5/16 x 5 7/8 inches; 237 x 150 mm.). xxiii, [3], 417, [1, printer's slug]; xv, [1], 399, [1, printer's slug] pp. Seventy-one hand-colored aquatint plates after Robert Cruikshank (68), Thomas Rowlandson (2), and G.M. Brightly (1). Seventy-four woodcut text illustrations and one woodcut plate.

First issue with the woodcut The Five Principal Orders of Society (volume 1, facing page 3); Plate 28 (facing page 389 in volume one) misdated "1284" and page 222 in volume two is blank. The plates are watermarked 1823 & 1824. Some offsetting from plates to opposite text leaves. The plates clean and fresh.

Full contemporary tan calf, covers with blind 'Greek Key' borders. Expertly rebacked with the original spines laid down. Spines with four shallow raised bands, decoratively ruled in gilt and blind in compartments, red and green morocco labels lettered in gilt, plain gray endpapers, all edges marbled. A very nice copy in it's original binding, albeit repaired.

From the library of Sir William Eden, Bart., (1849-1915) with his armorial bookplate to front pastedowns. He was the father of Sir Anthony Eden, who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 6th April 1955 to 9th January 1957.

Charles Molloy Westmacott (1788-1868) was a British journalist, author, and editor of The Age, the leading Sunday newspaper of the early 1830s which specialized in scurrilous and satirical gossip about celebrities of the day, who sometimes wrote under the pseudonym Bernard Blackmantle. Westmacott was savagely portrayed by Edward Bulwer-Lytton as the unprincipled gossip-monger ("Sneak") in his England and the English (1833), and was known as the most notorious extortionate editor of his day. While he did accept money to suppress publication of stories, this was legal until the 1843 Libel Act. In the 1840s Westmacott moved to Paris, where he died in 1868.

Abbey, Life 325; Bobins II, 738; Tooley, 504; Ogilby, British Military Costume Prints, 211.

Price: $1,650.00