1787 Rare Anti-slavery Children's Moral Book Set Leather 3v Illustrated Antique For SaleUp for sale is the complete three-volume set of a classic anti-slavery work for children, entitled THE HISTORY OF SANDFORD AND MERTON: A Work Intended for the Use of Children. Printed for John Stockdale in London. Three volumes published in 1787, 1788 and 1789 respectively (fourth edition, second edition, and first edition, respectively.) Uniformly bound in full calf with red leather title label on spine.
Published just as anti-slavery fervor was reaching its height in England, the story centers around a Thomas Merton, the spoiled son of a Jamaica slave-owner, and how his life is changed by interacting with Harry Sandford, the son of a plain, honest farmer. The series was written by Thomas Day and became quite popular. The third volume has a more direct anti-slavery message, with the introduction of a black character and an explicit anti-slavery section. Set is, in total, in FAIR condition, with some covers close to detaching, and the front cover of Volume III detached. All pages present, with a few uneven signatures. Despite wear, text blocks are clean and still an attractive set with intact spines.
Volumes I and II bear ownership inscriptions and former owners names; Volume III bears the striking armorial mermaid bookplate of Frederick H.H. Glasse. In it, a mermaid clutches a comb and a mirror, under the motto LUCTOR NON MERGOR (I struggle, but am not overwhelmed.) Bookplate seems to date from around the period of the books publication. Overall a handsome antique set of childrens tales. Good luck!
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