[1818-28] · London
by Whitaker, John. Blake, William.
2 vols. London: Button Whitaker and Company, [1818-28]. 2 vols., royal 8vo, engraved title, (4), iv, 240 (engraved plates of music and text); engraved title after Blake, 240 (engraved plates of music and text), (4, indices)pp. Original dark blue ribbed cloth, backstrips lettered in gilt, covers showing some wear and staining, internally some browning and final leaf to vol. 2 repaired at margins with no loss. In all a good set, surprisingly scarce complete. Presumably a remainder binding as the title-page notes that it was issued in boards. § All editions are very scarce. The engraved title to volume 2 has "Conscience and the Recording Angel" beneath Blake's design, and a direction to "See Page 1, Vol 2 of this work". The design is a reduced scale copy of that for page 27 of Young's "Night Thoughts" engraving, with the text for The Seraph's title replacing that in the corresponding area of the original. Pages 1-5 of Volume 2 have the words from page 27 of Night Thoughts spoken by the Recording Angel: words are set to music by Young for 4 voices. The engraved image by P. Jones is a good replica of Blake's original, crisp, clean, with just some browning to the margins. Bentley, BB, 512 C and BBS, page 264. Note: the only non-English composer of the music was Mozart, two pieces in each volume. Also, one piece is attributed to John Milton (father of the great poet).
(Inventory #: 123144)