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JOHNSON, Samuel - BOSWELL, James; George Birkbeck Hill (ed.)

Boswell's Life of Johnson.

Including Boswell's journal of a tour to the Hebrides and Johnson's diary of a journey into North Wales.

Oxford: The Clarendon Press, 1887 Stock Code: 139100
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A handsome extra illustrated set

First Hill edition. By 1887 Hill was an established commentator of both Johnson and Boswell's works, having published Dr Johnson, his Friends and his Critics (1878) and an edition of Boswell's correspondence (1879). The Clarendon Press accepted Hill's proposal for a new edition of Boswell's Life in 1881, and the six volume text - the product of almost twelve years of work - was published in 1887. "The edition was lauded as a masterpiece of spacious editing" and "an unparalleled example of industry and completeness" (ODNB).

This copy belonged to William Hall Walker, 1st Baron Wavertree (1856-1933), a British businessman, art collector, and an important figure in thoroughbred racehorse breeding.

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6 volumes, octavo (228 x 145 mm). Finely bound by Morrell in brown morocco, titles direct to spines in gilt, raised bands, floral motifs in gilt to compartments and turn-ins, Johnson's portrait blocked in gilt within medallion to corner of each board and signature to each opposite corner, top edges gilt, others untrimmed, grey-blue endpapers.


Extra illustrated with frontispieces and numerous engraved and lithographic plates of views and facsimile, some folding, some in colour, and an original drawing in ink and pencil of Helen Maria Williams after her engraved portrait.


Bookseller's ticket (Howell of Liverpool) to front pastedown of vol. 1; armorial bookplates of William Hall to all front pastedowns. Faint scattered spotting, else a fine, unfaded set.


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