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Item #BB1750 [Political Tract] The Medall. A Satyre Against Sedition. By the Authour of Absalom and Achitophel. John DRYDEN.
[Political Tract] The Medall. A Satyre Against Sedition. By the Authour of Absalom and Achitophel
[Political Tract] The Medall. A Satyre Against Sedition. By the Authour of Absalom and Achitophel

[Political Tract] The Medall. A Satyre Against Sedition. By the Authour of Absalom and Achitophel

London: printed for Jacob Tonson at the Judge’s Head in Chancery-lane, near Fleet-street, 1682. First Edition. Marbled Wrappers. Presumed second issue (two lines of Latin verse on final page) of this satirical poem lampooning the Earl of Shaftesbury. Small 4to: [12],20pp. There are at least two issues: the first (Macdonald 13.a.i) lacks the Latin lines at the end. Recent hand-marbled stiff paper wrappers, paper title label printed in black to front cover. An excellent example, beautifully rebound and generally clean throughout. Macdonald 13.a.ii. Wing D2311. ESTC R17608. Pforzheimer 331. Ashley Library II, pp. 84-85. Near Fine+. Item #BB1750

Dryden's unsparing invective against the Whigs, prefaced by a vigorous and plainspoken prose "Epistle to the Whigs." In 1681, the Whigs had a medal struck in Poland (the Earl of Shaftesbury's head in profile on the obverse, the sun rising over the Tower of London on the reverse) to commemorate the release of one of their most prominent leaders, who had been held in the Tower on charges of treason for opposing the succession of the Catholic James to the throne. It was the perfect prompt for Dryden's mock-heroic satire: "Of all our Antick Sights, and Pageantry / Which English Ideots run in crowds to see / The Polish Medall bears the prize alone: " In fact, most of "Dryden’s masterpieces were written in the 1680s after the Titus Oates Plot had driven the nation into hysteria against the Catholic minority, with the result that thousands were imprisoned and a number, including Dryden’s cousin Lord Howard, were executed. From the start Dryden ridiculed the Plot (fomented by the radical Whigs) with all the civilized disdain he was capable of in The Spanish Fryar (1680), Absalom and Achitophel (1681) and The Medall (1682)." (Literary Encyclopedia) As a result, he became the butt of personal attacks, in word and deed: an ambush in Rose Alley nearly killed him. N. B. 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. (Fine Editions Ltd is a member of the Independent Online Booksellers Association, and we subscribe to its codes of ethics.).

Price: $465.00

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