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WHITE, Henry (ed.)

History of France,

from the earliest period to the present year. With questions for examination at the end of each chapter; and a map of the country, showing in colour the English possessions in 1165-1483. For the use of schools and private students.

Published: Edinburgh: Oliver and Boyd, and London: Simpkin and Marshall, & Co., 1850

Stock code: 111999

Price: £150

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This item is on show at 43 Dover Street (map)

First edition of this uncommon early Victorian school textbook, just five copies traced in libraries world-wide, all in the United Kingdom. Henry White (1812-1880) received his MA from Trinity College, Cambridge and his doctorate from Heidelberg before spending a short time working with the Swiss historian Merle d’Aubigne in Geneva. He was the author of several historical textbooks; in total his History of France, the last in 1870. His reputation largely rests on his 1867 study of the Massacre of St Bartholomew, “the first English work to argue that the massacre was the result of a sudden decision, and not of a long-prepared conspiracy” (ODNB).

Large duodecimo (172 x 100 mm). Original blue cloth, spine lettered in gilt, twin blind rules to covers, red speckled edges, advertisement endpapers. Folding map frontispiece in partial colour. Contemporary ownership inscription to half-title. Lightly rubbed overall, spine gently rolled, tips bumped, pale mark to fore edge of front board endpapers foxed. A very good copy, internally clean and fresh, the gilt titles notably bright.

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