WRIGHT, Abraham (Ed.) – Delitiæ delitiarum

WRIGHT, Abraham (Ed.). Delitiæ delitiarum sive Epigrammatum ex optimis quibusq[ue] hujus & novissimi seculi poetis in amplissimâ illâ Bibliothecâ Bodleiana, et penè omninò alibi extantibus, ανθολογια, in unam corollam connexa.

Oxford, Excudebat Leonardus Lichfield impensis Gulielmi Webb, 1637.

£ 600

FIRST EDITION. 12mo, pp. (xvi) 247 (i), †8 A-K12 L4, first leaf blank. Roman letter, a little Italic. T-p boxed within a frame, headpieces and fretwork decorations. Ms. autograph of Charles Stonor Bodenham (1712-1764), “Esq. of Rotherwas, m. Frances Pendrill, descended from Richard Pendrill, who saved King Charles II” (B. Burke, A Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry of Great Britain & Ireland, Vol. 1, London 1906, 11th ed., p. 154), on t-p. Small tear affecting foot of D2 and large tear to margin and centre of F5, no text loss. Light browning and age yellowing, some waterstainingon initial and final leaves, a very few ms. notes throughout. In early calf binding, gilt title on red morocco label to spine, spine and corners somewhat worn.

A Bachelor of Arts and Fellow of St. John’s College, Abraham Wright (1611-1690) published the results of his lighter reading in the Bodleian in a little volume printed by Leonard Lichfield. This book is mainly in verse and it is an anthology including poetry extracts, poems, and epigrams by various authors, from the Middle Ages to the early modern period, whose books are kept in the prestigious Oxford library. It includes an epigram on tobacco at page 218, which testifies to the novelty of tobacco smoking and chewing and the spread of its consumption at the time. During C17th, tobacco and its properties were debated all over Europe, with many supporters and as many opponents, King James I among the latter.