[MAXWELL, William Hamilton.]
Wild Sports of the West.
With Legendary Tales, and Local Sketches.
First edition. “In 1829 Maxwell achieved recognition as a writer when Henry Colburn published his Stories of Waterloo, for which he paid him £300. Three years later one of his most popular books appeared: Wild Sports of the West (1832). This contained lively tales and legends together with colourful descriptions of Irish people, sporting activities (such as salmon fishing and deer hunting), and the Connaught countryside… Maxwell had thus become a progenitor of two kinds of fiction which became popular in the 1830s and 1840s: the military novel and the rollicking story of Irish life” (ODNB). The presence of aquatint illustrations is unusual, and the wood engravings in the text, mostly signed “T. Bagg”, are delightful.
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2 volumes, octavo (212 x 132 mm). Later 19th-century dark red half calf by Larkins, richly gilt spines, black morocco twin labels, marbled sides and endpapers. Aquatint frontispieces, 3 plates, 12 wood-engravings in the text. Bound without the half-title in volume I (as called-for by Sadleir), bindings a little rubbed, a few gatherings a little proud, scattered foxing or signs of handling. An attractive set.