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HISTORICAL MEMOIRS OF THE IRISH BARDS Interspersed with Anecdotes of, and Occasional Observations on the Music of Ireland. Also, an Historical and Descriptive Account of the Musical Instruments of the Ancient Irish. And an Appendix, Containing Several Bio

WALKER, Joseph C[ooper]

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Price: $750.00


London: T.Payne and Son, 1786. First Edition. 4to. Modern half green Morocco over olive linen boards. Gilt spine titles with decorative elements. Mild rubbing to board edges with some minor bumping at the corners. Marbled endpapers. Handsome armorial bookplate, most likely ex-libris the Duke of Fife. Top edge gilt, else completely untrimmed and amply margined. xii (but lacking fourth leaf, a cancel, containing vii-viii),166, 124, [2], plus frontis (bound at end), 4p. sheet music ("Irish Melodies"), and folding plate. Aforementioned missing leaf aside, collates fully (complete collation available on request). A fine copy. (Item ID: 20742)

First London edition (from the original plates, with new title page; ESTC calls it "a reissue of the Dublin edition") of this important history of Irish music and verse. Walker (1766-1810) was a member of the Royal Irish Academy and with this account of the bardic tradtion provided the first comprehensive and coherent history of Irish music from the earliest times through the 18th century. Furthermore, MEMOIRS marked the first book appearance of the verse of Turlough O'Carolan, as well as that of Charlotte Brooke, who did the Carolan translations but was too shy to put her name to her work. A second edition, more common and much expanded by James Christie, appeared in 1818. Though not institutionally rare, the first edition is scarce, and the London edition is rare in the trade. While we find more than half-a-dozen auctions for the Dublin edition over the last 30+ years (the majority with significant condition issues), there have been none of the London. [Bonser 7340, citing the Dublin edition].



By This Author: WALKER, Joseph C[ooper]
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