Cambridge: Macmillan & Co., 1855. First edition. A Near Fine set in original cloth. A rare presentation copy, inscribed in a secretarial hand "From The Author" on the half-title of volume one. Volume one with discrete repair to the crown and minor color touch-up to the cloth. Volume two with a small snag to the cloth on the rear board, slight loss of color to the spine. Volume three with just a bit of bumping to the corners and spine ends pushed in. Half-titles in each volume, preliminary ad leaf in volume one and 16 page catalogue in the rear, dated April 1855 (Saldier notes a Feb. catalogue for the first edition). An exceptional set of this celebrated adventure tale. Housed in a mid-twentieth century custom clamshell case, and with an early James F. Drake description tucked in.
"Beginning in the fictional seaport of Bideford Quay in Devon, during the reign of Elizabeth I, Charles Kingsley's monumental novel follows the fortunes of Amyas Leigh, a young man who sets sail on a life of adventure on the high seas. After battling pirates and treasure hunting in the Caribbean, while setting out to rescue his beloved Rose Salterne, Amyas joins Sir Francis Drake as he prepares to face England's greatest threat -- the Spanish Armada" (Day). As celebratory as Kingsley is about the Elizabethan past, his massive novel also draws connections between that time and his own, urging readers to see parallels between England's past clashes with Spain and its current tensions with the French and their emperor Napoleon. Near Fine (Item #4123)