Title: The life of Napoleon, a Hudibrastic Poem in ...
Publisher: London, Printed for T. Tegg, III, Cheapside, Wm.Allason, 31 New Bond Street & J. Dick, Edinburgh.Plummer and Brewis, Printers, Love Lane, Eastcheap.
Publication Date: 1815
Book Condition: Good
FIRST EDITION. Engraved, aquatint hand-coloured title-page, with reverse blank, -260 (with these pages mis-numbered: 107 for 109, 211 for 121 & 186 for 187). With 30 hand-colored aquatint plates by Cruikshank, including vignette title depicting scenes of Napoleon's rise and fall (Original hand-coloured aquatint etchings over 200 years old!). Text watermarked 1813 & 1814. On plate 14 (facing p.94), the word "Siege" is misprinted "Seige" and on plate 26 (facing p.233), the word "Leipsic" is misprinted "Liepsic". Nine leaves and three plates with historic repairs mainly to their margins. Offsetting, browning & foxing proliferate. Text block with old ink stain that failed to penetrate the books inner margins. Some titles to plates bound tightly into the gutter. However hand-coloured aquatints remain bright. 14.5 x 23 cm. Vintage (1924-59) half calf binding, with black leather label, lettered R.S.M. in gilt at foot of spine. Some handling wear & corners very slightly bumped. The Life of Napoleon, originally issued in fifteen weekly parts (from November 10,1814) is a Hudibrastic poem depicting fictional events from the life of Napoleon Bonaparte, portraying the French statesman's military actions in a largely negative light (Napoleon is depicted as an egoist, murderer & tyrant). George Cruikshank (1792-1878) was a British caricaturist & illustrator, who famously executed the book illustrations for his friend Charles Dickens. The text is now considered NOT to be by Combe, but the real author is unknown. William Combe, who claimed to author this poem under the pseudonym "Dr. Syntax", was a British writer known for a miscellany of work, which included several satires and comical poems. A Hudibrastic poem, named after Samuel Butler's 17th century poem Hudibras, was a type of mock-heroic verse written in iambic tetrameter and most often used for satire. This first edition was published in the same year as Napoleon's defeat at the Battle of Waterloo and was followed by a later edition in 1817. Abbey Life, 356. Cohn, 153. Martin Hardie, 196. Prideaux, 322. Reid, 4651. Tooley, 151. Bookseller Inventory # 4407