London: William Pickering, 1830. Half-Calf. Second Pickering edition, edited by Thomas Tyrwhitt (1730–86). Five octavo volumes (complete): ,ccxxii,122; ,354; ,290; ,348; viii,296pp, with two engraved plates, of the Canterbury pilgrimage and a portrait of Chaucer. Period forest-green half-calf, marbled paper-covered boards, spines in five compartments between raised bands with titles and volume numbers in gilt, top edges gilt, fore- and bottom edges untrimmed, marbled end papers. An excellent set, the bindings tight, the pages clean, bright and virtually free of foxing. A number of marginal, mostly two-word annotations in a very neat hand, in pencil (easily erased without a trace but of pedagogic value, particularly pointing out cases in which notes are to be referred to), in vols. I-III. Fine. Item #BB0963
Tyrwhitt's fame rests chiefly upon his edition of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, published in five volumes between 1775 and 1778. According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, "Chaucer’s reputation had suffered because the principles on which his verse depends were no longer understood; it was Tyrwhitt who pointed out [expounded here at length in the Glossary in Volume 5] that final e’s (by his time mute) ought to be pronounced as separate syllables and that the accent of a word was often placed in the French manner (e.g., virtúe, not vírtue)." His scholarship is still held in high regard, and this edition of The Canterbury Tales is considered among the finest ever published. Note: With few exceptions (always identified), we only stock books in exceptional condition, carefully preserved in archival, removable polypropylene sleeves. All orders are packaged with care and posted promptly. Satisfaction guaranteed.