London: Printed by M[iles] F[lesher] for John Marriot, 1633. First edition. First edition of the principal collection of Donne’s poetical works, issued two years after his death. In a lovely modern binding, full red morocco, raised bands on the spine with gilt compartments, black morocco spine label, decorative tooling on the front and rear boards and marbled end papers. Small quarto (175 x 132 mm.) collating: [x], 406 pp. Poems with the rare two leaves (signed A and A2) containing “The Printer to the Understanders” and “Hexastichon Bibliopolæ,” not present in all copies. Leaf Nn1 in the earliest, uncorrected state with thirty-five lines of text on p. 273, instead of thirty or thirty-one, as later corrected. With numerous woodcuts throughout. Top edge trimmed close, occasionally affecting decorative line above the running title. The odd spot of soiling or finger smudge, but generally in excellent condition. Leaf Mm with the edge of the corner torn off.
A collection of poems from one of the greatest English poets, John Donne, which holds more than simple words. For a poet who was also a converted Anglican cleric, Donne's poetry is quite sensual, powerful, and paradoxical. His most often quoted work appears in the Holy Sonnet X: "Death, be not proud, though some have called thee / Mighty and dreadful, for thou art not so." And while he garnered admiration from a small circle of followers during his life and after his death, it was not until the first decades of the twentieth century that Donne's work experienced a true revival. He came back into fashion with modernist authors and philosophers as a metaphysical poet, whose unlikely and ingenious metaphors illustrate a deep understanding of the world. The resounding vibrancy of his language inspired the likes of T.S. Elliot, William Butler Yeats, Ernest Hemingway, and other writers of the twentieth century. Though written four hundred years ago, Donne's poetry is still immediate and relevant today.
Grolier, Langland to Wither, 71. Keynes, Donne, 78. Pforzheimer 296. STC 7045. (Item #1336)
Out of stock