York: Printed by A. Ward for J. Dodsley, Pall-Mall; T. Cadell, in the Strand; J. Robson, New-Bond-Street; and T. Durham, Charing-Cross, London. W. Creech and J. Balfour, Edinburgh, M.DCC.LXXVI . First Edition thus. Full Calf. First Hunter Edition (sixth overall, first published in 1664), virtually doubling the original text. 4to (298 x 230mm): ,649,pp, with engraved portrait frontispiece of Evelyn by F. Bartolozzi, 40 full-page copper-engraved plates of foliage, flowers, and fruits by Johann Sebastian Muller (including one folding, “A Winter View of the Canthorpe Oak," drawn by William Burgh and engraved by Muller), and folding table. ("The Chestnut Tree," meant to face p. 153, bound facing p. 159.) With list of subscribers and index. Period full tree calf, skillfully recornered and rebacked retaining original spine in six compartments divided by raised bands, black leather lettering piece gilt, covers framed with gilt role, marbled end papers. Occasional light spotting, slight browning and offsetting from plates, but a fresh, wide-margined copy, securely bound and generally clean throughout, the plates in deep, rich impressions. Henrey 137. Keynes 47. Gibson's Library, p. 122. Nissen BBI 615. Bibliotheca Bibliographici 2057. Near Fine+. Item #BB2772
In 1652, Evelyn set about creating the garden at Sayes Court (the 200-acre Deptford estate his father-in-law held from the crown), signaling the start of a serious interest in landscape design. This led to his writing the Elysium Britannicum, an encyclopedic history of gardens and gardening practices that occupied him for most of his life. Silva, his pioneering work on tree cultivation, as well as his book on soils (A Philosophical Discourse of Earth, 1676) were both outgrowths of Elysium Britannicum. Although primarily intended to encourage tree planting after the devastation of the civil war, Silva was also a learned account of the growth and uses of native trees interpolated by an edited collection of materials contributed by fellows of the Royal Society from different parts of the country (Silva was the first book to carry the Society’s imprimatur). By its fourth edition it also included "An Historical Account of the Sacredness and Use of Standing Groves." This handsome reissue, with additional plates and with "learned and extensive" (Keynes) annotations, practical instructions, and references to the best eighteenth century authorities by Alexander Hunter, gave S renewed popularity. N. B. With few exceptions (always identified), we only stock books in exceptional condition, carefully preserved in archival, removable mylar 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.).