DescriptionRobert Dodsley, ed. A Collection of Poems in Six Volumes by Several Hands. London: J. Hughs for R. & J. Dodsley, 1758. Krown & Spellman retail: $400. 8vo. 6 vols. Vol. 1- 335pp; Vol 2.- 336pp; Vol. 3- 351pp; Vol. 4- 361pp; Vol. 5- 336pp; Vol. 6- 336pp. Contemporary gilt leather. Hinges splitting on all volumes. Front cover loose on volume two. Contemporary notes. Text in fine condition. With a frontispiece and an illustration in each volume. From the Krown & Spellman Collection.
Dodsley, Robert (1704-1764), bookseller and writer."The advertisement to Dodsley's second major contribution to English literary history, A Collection of Poems by Several Hands, showed similar intent and foresight: 'to preserve to the public those poetical performances, which seemed to merit a longer remembrance than what would probably be secured to them by the Manner wherein they were originally published' (Collection of Poems, 1748, vol. 1.iii-iv). Given the extensive circle of poets Dodsley had cultivated by 1747, he had no trouble filling the first three volumes of the Collection, which appeared on 15 January 1748. Four editions were called for by March 1755 when Dodsley added a fourth volume, and, three years later, he completed the set with volumes 5 and 6. Although the earlier volumes showed many changes by their 1758 edition, the Collection set the canon for mid-eighteenth-century poetry, passing through several editions and supplements by other editors through the rest of the century. Although the earlier volumes show a disproportionate number of contributions by Dodsley's friends Shenstone and Akenside, except in the case of perhaps a half-dozen figures (including Swift and Young), its pages reflect the work of most major and minor practising poets of Dodsley's era." [ODNB] ESTC t115890 (vols 1-3),t115889 (v4),t115893 (v 5-6) Courtney, Dodsley's collection, pg 71.
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