The Letters of Pliny the Consul: with Occasional Remarks. By William Melmoth, Esq.

  • Pliny the Younger
  • Dublin: Printed for George and Alexander Ewing 1748
  • ESTC T129387.


SKU: 3320 Category: Tags: , ,


FIRST DUBLIN EDITION, 2 vols., 12mo, pp. 240; [ii], 198, [6]. Contemporary Trinity College Dublin calf prize bindings by Joseph Leathley’s Binder, spines divided by raised bands, red morocco labels, other compartments with central gilt tools, boards blocked in gilt with TCD arms. Lightly toned and spotted, faint dampmark to upper corner of vol. 1. Somewhat rubbed and scratched, flyleaves excised from vol. 2. Engraved prize bookplates to front pastedowns, filled out in manuscript awarding the book to Robert Maxwell in 1748.


A rare, early Dublin printing of William Melmoth the Younger's translation of Pliny's letters, first published in London in 1747, awarded as a prize by Trinity College Dublin and bound for that purpose by one of the College's regular binders. The Trinity College prize stamp is most often seen on copies of the 1738 Plato, the first book printed at the College's printing house, which was still being distributed as a prize at least two decades later - so this Pliny must have been a special choice made despite copies of the Plato being available. ESTC locates only four copies of this edition, none in Ireland: BL, Cambridge, Huntington, and New South Wales. The title-pages are cancels but the text is not a reissue of an earlier edition (all of which were rather larger).
The spine decoration is primarily made up of the R22 roll and tools 34 and 64 as used by Joseph Leathley's Binder and identified by McDonnell & Healy.

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