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ANTIQUARIAN BOOK

Illustrations of Political Economy.

MARTINEAU (Harriet).

MARTINEAU (Harriet).

Illustrations of Political Economy.

First Collected Edition. Nine volumes. 12mo. [145 x 90 x 225 mm]. Bound in contemporary half black calf, marbled paper sides, the spines divided into five panels, lettered in the second and numbered in the fourth on burgundy labels, the other panels with a gilt centre tool, buff endleaves, lightly sprinkled edges. (Refurbished where rubbed).
London: [by William Clowes for] Charles Fox, 1834.

[With]

Poor Laws and Paupers Illustrated.
First Collected Edition. One volume (of two). 12mo. [145 x 90 x 33 mm]. Uniformly bound with above.
London: [by W. Clowes for] Charles Fox, 1833.

[And]

Illustrations of Taxation.
First Collected Edition. 12mo. [146 x 85 x 23 mm]. Uniformly bound with above.
London: [by W. Clowes for] Charles Fox, 1834.

Harriet Martineau (1802-1876) was born in Norwich, the daughter of a textile manufacturer. She was a precocious child, reading Milton by the age of seven and passionately interested in political economy by 14. Her family suffered financial ruin in 1829 and three years later she moved to London to earn her living as a writer. Almost at once she began a series of short didactic novels on social and economic matters. These were issued at monthly intervals and proved enormously successful, some selling as many as 10,000 copies. Her publisher soon realised the possibility of gathering these tales, first issued in printed wrappers, into collected sets, as here. Each of the nine volumes of Illustrations of Political Economy has a general title-page (all dated 1834) and contains two or three tales, totalling 25 in all, each with separate pagination and title-pages, variously dated 1832, 1833 and 1834. As is always the case in collected sets, the earliest titles are reprints. In this set the three stories in vol.1 are the third, second and second editions, but thereafter they are all first editions, which is most unusual. Included with this set are Martineau's two similar but less successful continuations, the first contains three stories (a fourth story, The Land's End is usually found in a separate volume which is not present in this set), and the second has five. These are all first edition sheets, with separate title-pages and pagination, bound up with general titles.

There is a little spotting in places but it is a very good set.

Stock no. ebc2919

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Price: £750

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