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A COMMERCIAL DICTIONARY; CONTAINING THE PRESENT STATE OF MERCANTILE LAW, PRACTICE AND CUSTOM ... WITH VERY CONSIDERABLE ADDITIONS RELATIVE TO THE LAWS, USAGES, AND PRACTICE OF THE UNITED STATES
Philadelphia: James Humphreys, 1804. First American Edition. Hardcover. Some rubbing and flaking, mostly to the spines which are lightly chipped. Hinges sound, contents clean. Very Good set with an important provenance. Three octavo volumes in contemporary tree calf with contrasting morocco spine labels. This scarce set was first published in England in 1803 and published here for the first time in America with much new material added relating to American banking and insurance, including a section on Louisiana and more. Includes a subscribers list of prominent American institutions and businessmen, but not including the American businessman who has SIGNED the top of each of the three front endpapers: Allan Melvill, father of the novelist Herman Melville. Melvill ran an import business and these volumes would have been essential for him. The fact that they show little use is a possible indicator of why he never succeeded and often borrowed money to stay afloat. More than one critic has found the genesis of the character of Ahab in MOBY DICK in Melville's father who became insane before he died. Each volume also bears at the top of the title page the small name label of Herman's brother, Allan Melville, an attorney, to whom the novelist dedicated MARDI. From the collection of the late Jay Fliegelman. Listed as 368a in "A cumulative supplement to Melville's Reading" by Steven Olsen-Smith and Merton M. Sealts, Jr. published in the March 2004 issue of LEVIATHAN, which cites that the set was sold at auction in the fall of 1986. Sabin 50100. Montefiore was an English Jew who emigrated to America after the War of 1812.
      [Bookseller: Charles Agvent]
Last Found On: 2013-07-26           Check availability:      Biblio    

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