London: Hugh Cunninham, 1841. First edition of this lively novel in book form. It appeared in serial form in The Sunday Times in twelve installments in 1841. William Harrison Ainsworth (1805 – 1882) was a popular English historical novelist who trained as a lawyer, but the legal profession held no attraction for him and he devoted himself to journalism and literature. He wrote 39 novels over the course of his career. In 1840, Ainsworth published Guy Fawkes and The Tower of London. When their serial publications were completed at the end of the year, Ainsworth began writing Old St. Paul's, A Tale of the Plague and the Fire. Ainsworth, in a letter to James Crossley 7 December 1840, wrote: "You told me that you have a second part of De Foe's History of the Plague. Pray bring this with you. I will take the greatest care of it, but it is quite necessary I should see it, as I commence a new Romance with the New Year, under the title of The Plague of London. If you have any other tract relating to the period, or to the Fire, I shall feel obliged by the loan of it". Ainsworth was paid £1,000 for the work with control of the copyright. The work was later illustrated when it was published in a three volume set by Cunningham [Wikipedia]. Bound in three quarter black leather over maroon marbled paper boards. Marbled endpapers. All edges gilt. Some rubbing, bumping to edges of covers, and wear to boards. Text pages are lightly aged and there is scattered spotting and foxing though out. Volume III is missing its title page. With modest library labels on pastedowns and stamps on title pages from St. Charles College in Catonsville, MD. Ownership stamp of Rev. J.B. Troy on free front endpapers. The twenty handsome plates by Franklin also show spotting that is generally confined to the margins. Very good condition. Small octavos. Volume I: 352 pages; Volume II: 334 pages; Volume III: 327 pages. LIT/091222.
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Philadelphia: George Barrie and Son, Printed for Subscribers Only. Hardcover. Very Good. One volume of multivolume set. This title is John Law. Limited edition for subscribers only. First state of the large Japan edition. 11/250c. Vg in blue boards. Nine beautiful engravings after Remarque plus color frontis. Literature. LIT610171. Very Good.