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MILTON, JOHN. Paradise Lost. A Poem in Ten Books. London: Printed by S. Simmons, and are to be sold by T. Helder 1669. Small 4to, 185 x 132mm. (7 5/16 x 5 3/16in.), late eighteenth- or early nineteenth-century English blindstamped russia, spine gilt-lettered, g.e., rebacked with old backstrip preserved, extremities of binding badly worn, Nn4 with small hole affecting four words with loss, text browned, a few minor stains. FIRST EDITION, Amory's issue no. 3 (traditionally the 5th title), the original sheets of the poem with a cancel title-leaf and new preliminary matter: The Printer to the Reader" --here in its five-line variant--, "The Argument," "The Verse" and "Errata," woodcut initials and ornaments. Hugh Amory, "Things Unattempted Yet," in The Book Collector, vol. 32, no. 1, Spring 1983, pp. 41-66; Grolier Wither to Prior 603; Pforzheimer 718; Wing M-2142. Containing the celebrated defence of blank verse: "The Measure is English Heroic Verse without Rime...Rime being no necessary Adjunct or true Ornament of Poem or good Verse, in longer works especially, but the Invention of a barbarous Age, to set off wretched matter and lame Meeter." Provenance: Laura Jane Edwardes, nineteenth-century ink signature on a blank fly-leaf at front.

Details
MILTON, JOHN. Paradise Lost. A Poem in Ten Books. London: Printed by S. Simmons, and are to be sold by T. Helder 1669. Small 4to, 185 x 132mm. (7 5/16 x 5 3/16in.), late eighteenth- or early nineteenth-century English blindstamped russia, spine gilt-lettered, g.e., rebacked with old backstrip preserved, extremities of binding badly worn, Nn4 with small hole affecting four words with loss, text browned, a few minor stains. FIRST EDITION, Amory's issue no. 3 (traditionally the 5th title), the original sheets of the poem with a cancel title-leaf and new preliminary matter: The Printer to the Reader" --here in its five-line variant--, "The Argument," "The Verse" and "Errata," woodcut initials and ornaments. Hugh Amory, "Things Unattempted Yet," in The Book Collector, vol. 32, no. 1, Spring 1983, pp. 41-66; Grolier Wither to Prior 603; Pforzheimer 718; Wing M-2142. Containing the celebrated defence of blank verse: "The Measure is English Heroic Verse without Rime...Rime being no necessary Adjunct or true Ornament of Poem or good Verse, in longer works especially, but the Invention of a barbarous Age, to set off wretched matter and lame Meeter."

Provenance: Laura Jane Edwardes, nineteenth-century ink signature on a blank fly-leaf at front.
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