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GUMBLE, Thomas.

The Life of General Monck, Duke of Albermarle, &c. with Remarks upon his Actions.

London: Printed by J. S. for Thomas Basset, 1671 Stock Code: 139834
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First edition. Thomas Gumble (1626-1676), who had served as his subject's private chaplain, here offers a unique insight into the life of one of the great military figures of the age: George Monck had fought as the Commonwealth's commander but with the Restoration became Captain-General and the king's admiral. "Though his only literary work, this biography provided a seminal account of the general's rise to power and was translated into French by Guy Miege, for an edition published as La vie du General Monck in Rouen in the following year. The themes of the rightful return of a king; the restoration of 'traditional' élites in both church and state; and the evils brought about by the usurpation of power, were - in later years - clearly comforting and appealing fictions which were eagerly taken up by the Jacobite movement. In 1712 a new title-page was added at Cologne to some copies of Miege's edition, and the repackaged work was sold in order to raise funds for James Stuart's flagging cause" (ODNB).

Provenance: ownership inscription, on verso of the final leaf, of one John Tempest ("ejus liber" "his book") dated 1695. The Tempests were an old recusant family, prominent in County Durham. John (1679-1737) served as second member for the county in 1705. With the ownership inscription of Fitzherbert Tempest (dated 1698) in the margin at p. 152; Fitzherbert (1687-1724) had a military career, appointed lieutenant to Captain Francis Fleming in Colonel Thomas Allnutt's Regiment (later the 36th (Herefordshire) Regiment). As was the practice of the time, regimental names were changed with each new colonel, therefore, in 1711, when Tempest was promoted to captain, he served in the Quebec Expedition of that year with Disney's Regiment. In 1715 he was present at the inconclusive battle of Sheriffmuir during the Jacobite rising, where the newly-named William Egerton's Regiment was part of Grant's Brigade (see Stuart Reid, Sheriffmuir, 1715, 2014, p. 176, where Tempest is named). Fitzherbert's inscription, below where he has been practising his ABC, appears on the page where Gumble is discussing Monck's presence in Edinburgh and the "Cold-Streamers", the regiment that would become the Coldstream Guards, founded by Monck in 1650.

With the elaborate bookplate of Charles William Vane, third marquess of Londonderry (17781854), his arms, with hussar supporters, including his many military awards. A brave but not particularly brilliant soldier, Sir John Moore described him as "a very silly fellow", Vane served with variable distinction throughout the Peninsular War. His Narrative of the war (1828), based on his correspondence with his half-brother Lord Castlereagh, was not uncontroversial. His dashing and dandified portrait by Sir Thomas Lawrence is at the National Portrait Gallery. A very attractive copy with a splendid martial association.

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Octavo (165 x 105 mm). Mid-18th century calf, spine richly gilt, each compartment with a triple gilt fillet border and filled with foliate motifs, raised bands and head and tail decorated with oblique gilt fillets, red morocco label, triple gilt fillet border to sides, grey-brown speckled edges, Antique Spot marbled endpapers.


Fine engraved portrait frontispiece of Monck by Robert White.


A few old marginal ink stains to frontispiece and title page, paper flaw to lower fore corner of leaf 2F2 with loss of a few words. A lovely copy, complete with errata leaf H4 at the end.


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