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    A Handsome Octavo Set of Chesterfield's Letters to His Son

    Philip Dormer Stanhope. Letters Written by the Late Right Honourable Philip Dormer Stanhope, Earl of Chesterfield, to His Son ... London: J. Dodsley, 1774.

    First octavo edition. Four octavo volumes (8 x 5 inches; 203 x 127 mm.). Complete with half titles and an engraved frontispiece by J. Valtalba.

    Contemporary speckled calf, rebacked. Spines lettered in gilt, five raised bands, new endpapers. Scattered light foxing and soiling, primarily marginal. Acid toning to edges of initial and terminal leaves. Edges of frontispiece and volume 1 title slightly soiled; fore-edge of frontispiece built up. Some wear to board edges, with rounded corners, exposing interior pasteboard. Overall a good copy.

    A pleasing copy of this celebrated work. The letters in the compilation are to the urbane and witty Chesterfield's illegitimate son, spanning a thirty year period, and ending only with young Stanhope's premature death of dropsy in 1768. The letters represent an attempt to inculcate both knowledge and manners, and thus present an unmatched picture of proper British breeding and social graces in the eighteenth century.

    Gulick 5.

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    June, 2008
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