Birmingham: typis Johannis Baskerville, MDCCLXXII . First Edition thus. Full Calf. First Baskerville Edition, one of the "noble quartos," prized "for their magnificence of type, paper, ink, and presswork." (DNB) 4to: ,280pp. Period-style twentieth-century gilt-tooled mottled calf, flat spine in six compartments divided by triple-gilt rules with gilt devices and red morocco lettering pieces, boards paneled with French fillets and corner rosettes, wide gilt turn-ins, marbled end papers, all edges gilt, on "good quality 'Writing Royal' laid" paper. Gordon 20. Gaskell 43. PMM 87 (citing Paris edition of 1563). Lowndes III 1410. Bibliotheca Bibliographici 271. Harwood, p. 156. Fine. Item #BB1685
In 1772 and 1773, Baskerville brought out a quarto series of seven Latin authors, including this Lucretius. H. R. Tedder called them "these noble quartos," and wrote that "for their magnificence of type, paper, ink, and presswork there can only be unqualified praise. Nothing finer had yet been attempted in England." (DNB III 363) Stylistically, Baskerville's contribution was incalculable. "For centuries before the development of Baskerville's typography, English printers had doggedly imitated Dutch and continental models. Seventeenth-century English books, containing many of the greatest classics of English literature, are bad examples of typography. [Dale Roylance cites the Shakespeare folios, which are "full of the poorest presswork, broken and mismatched type, bad inking and manneristic Dutch ornaments."} Baskerville turned his back on this slovenly presswork and created an entirely new look for English printing." (Princeton University Library Chronicle XLII, 3 [Spring, 1981] pp. 210-211. N. B. With few exceptions (always identified), we only stock books in exceptional condition. All orders are packaged with care and posted promptly. Satisfaction guaranteed.