Pepys, Samuel - The Diary of Samuel Pepys Limited Edition - ( Item 132819 )
Published in London by Folio Society. 2003. First Thus. 11 Fine Quarter-Leather Hardbacks. No inscriptions or bookplates. 11 Quarter-Leather Hardbacks in original oak bookshelf as supplied by the Folio Society. The bookshelf back is pinned, and this could do with some extra pins to hold it formly in place. Acclaimed by The Times as 'one of the glories of contemporary English publishing' and by Sir Arthur Bryant as 'complete perfection', the Latham and Matthews edition remains the authoritative text and provides the source for this magnificent Folio Society publication. Limited to 1,000 copies of which this is number 385. Three hundred years ago, on 16 May 1703, at exactly forty three minutes past three in the morning by his own most reliable watch, Samuel Pepys died. The son of a London tailor, Pepys had risen to become one of the most important men in the Kingdom - the First Secretary to the Admiralty and President of the Royal Society. He was, according to John Evelyn, his friend of nearly forty years, 'a very worthy, industrious and curious person … Universally beloved, hospitable, generous, learned in many things, skilled in music, a very great cherisher of learned men …' Yet these great achievements might have merited only passing references in the history books had it not been for his Diary - an extraordinary, marvellous, racy and unique document, covering ten years of his life, which no one, not even his wife, knew he was writing. The Diary of Samuel Pepys is without doubt the most famous diary in the English language. Yet for over a century, the manuscripts in their secretive shorthand lay unopened in a Cambridge college library and for another century they remained unpublished. Astonishingly it was not until 1971 that the entire diary appeared. The life’s work of Professor William Matthews and Robert Latham, it had taken over thirty years to finish and it took the reading public by storm. The true extent of the phenomenon that was Pepys’s Diary was revealed at last. A comprehensive Index and a Companion volume were added - invaluable books designed to accompany modern readers on their journey through Pepys’s world. To present the Diary in a binding worthy of its status and to retain a strong 17th-century flavour, quarter leather with hand-marbled sides was chosen - the design for the marbling being devised by Ann Muir exclusively for this edition. The type on the spines is by William Caslon, the first of the great English type founders. For the edge-gilding a maroon wash has been applied over the gold to produce an enriched patina.
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