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History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman - GIBBON Edward - 1782. 
1782 - GIBBON, Edward. The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. London: Printed for W. Strahan and T. Cadell, 1782-1788. Six volumes. Quarto, contemporary full tan calf rebacked in elaborately gilt-decorated calf, red and green morocco spine labels. $10000.Mixed edition set, including three first editions (Volumes I-III are early "New" editions, and Volumes IV-VI are first editions) of one of the greatest classics of Western thought, with three engraved maps by Kitchin, two of them folding. Beautifully bound."This masterpiece of historical penetration and literary style has remained one of the ageless historical works". Gibbon brought a width of vision and a critical mastery of the available sources which have not been equaled to this day; and the result was clothed in an inimitable prose" (PMM 222). "For 22 years Gibbon was a prodigy of steady and arduous application. His investigations extended over almost the whole range of intellectual activity for nearly 1500 years. And so thorough were his methods that the laborious investigations of German scholarship, the keen criticisms of theological zeal, and the steady researches of (two) centuries have brought to light very few important errors in the results of his labors. But it is not merely the learning of his work, learned as it is, that gives it character as a history. It is also that ingenious skill by which the vast erudition, the boundless range, the infinite variety, and the gorgeous magnificence of the details are all wrought together in a symmetrical whole". It is still entitled to be esteemed as the greatest historical work ever written" (Adams, Manual of Historical Literature, 146-7). All 1000 copies of the first edition of Volume I were sold within two weeks of publication in January 1776. Volume I here is the 1782 edition or fifth overall; Volumes II and III are the 1787 edition or fourth overall. Volumes IV-VI are first editions. With map of the "Western Part of the Roman Empire" in Volume I and maps of the "Eastern Part of the Roman Empire" and "Parts of Europe and Asia Adjacent to Constantinople" in Volume II. Frontispiece engraved portrait of Gibbon in Volume I; bound with half-titles in all volumes except Volume I. Norton 26, 27, 29. Rothschild 942, 945. Grolier 100. Portrait, maps and text clean and fine. Expert restoration to extremities of contemporary calf covers. An excellent set of this classic work. [Attributes: First Edition; Hard Cover]
[Bookseller: Bauman Rare Books]
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