STUART, James (1713-1788) & Nicholas REVETT (1720-1804). The Antiquities of Athens. London: John Haberkron (vol.I), John Nichols (vols.II-III), T. Bensley for J. Taylor (vol.IV) and G. Woodfall for Priestley & Weale (vol.V), 1762-1787-1794-1796-1830.
5 volumes, 2° (541 x 355mm). Engraved title, one folding hand-coloured engraved map, 369 plates, plans and maps, some folding or double-page, extra-illustrated with portraits of Stuart (in vol.I, dated 1789) and Revett (in vol.IV, dated 1810), and a duplicate seventh plate in vol.V. (Lacking portrait of Stuart in vol.II, correct portrait of Revett in vol.IV, and two portraits in vol.V, about 80 plates with appreciable spotting, hand-coloured map close-shaved along the lower edge.) Uniform early 19th-century green morocco gilt, covers with decorative border built up from four groups of triple-fillets, interspersed around roll-tools of classical motifs, spines in eight compartments with raised bands, lettered in the second and third, the others with repeat overall decoration built up from small tools, gilt turn-ins, gilt edges Provenance: Joseph Neeld (armorial bookplate).
FIRST EDITIONS OF EACH VOLUME, INCLUDING THE FIFTH, SUPPLEMENTARY VOLUME, bound uniformly soon after completion. A fine set, the result of Stuart and Revett's careful survey of ancient Athens undertaken between March 1751 and January 1754. On their return to England, Stuart's lackadaisical approach to writing the text to the proposed first volume allied with his wish to use the text to discredit J.-D. Leroy led to a delay in publishing the first volume until 1762. This first volume and the subsequent volumes are now seen as one of the most important works in the revival of interest in Greek architecture, and represent the first accurate survey of classical Athens. This copy is without plate 29 in vol.II as usual. Blackmer 1617; Cicognara 2713; cf. Fowler 340; cf. Harris 857.