COWLEY, Abraham

COWLEY, Abraham. The mistress, with other select poems

London: The Nonesuch Press, 1926.


FIRST AND LIMITED EDITION. Large 8vo; 213 pp. Engraved vignette on title page; slight offsetting of the engraving. Number 227 of 1050 numbered copies. Pages untrimmed; Dutch rag paper, printed and made in Scotland by R. & R. Clark for the Nonesuch Press in Monotype Bodoni. Slight foxing and browning especially on first and last flyleaves, otherwise very clean and crisp pages. Original tan buckram with calf label. An excellent copy.


Abraham Cowley (1618 – 1667) was one of the leading English poets of the 17th century. The Mistress is a collection published in 1647 that quickly became extremely popular – it has been described as the “last and most violent expression of the amatory affectation of the 17th century”. The present book includes not only The Mistress but also other selected poems by Cowley. Other works by Cowley include the Pindarique Odes (also in this volume), Pyramus and Thisbe, Poetical Blossoms, Naufragium Ioculare , and his unfinished epic on King David, Davideis. He was among the first poets to use the Pindaric ode form in English poetry.