Leviathan 1651 Thomas Hobbes First Issue First Edition Constitution For Sale
LEVIATHAN 1651 THOMAS HOBBES FIRST ISSUE FIRST EDITION Constitution
HOBBES, Thomas. Leviathan, or, The Matter, Forme, & Power of a Common-wealth Ecclesiasticall and Civill. London: Andrew Crooke, 1651. Small Folio, full brown speckled calf sympathetically rebacked. Full condition report below. One quire is misnumbered but the text is continous and complete. (10) 1-248, 247--256, 261-396. However book's signatureson the bottom arecontinuous A1-DDD4. AGAIN ODD PAGINATION BUT 100% COMPLETE. Paginated by well known sale house and of course by myself.
A POWERFUL INFLUENCE ON THE FRAMERS OF THE CONSTITUTION”: FIRST EDITION/FIRST ISSUEOF HOBBES’ LANDMARK LEVIATHAN.
“This book produced a fermentation in English thought not surpassed until the advent of Darwinism. Its importance may be gauged by the long list of assailants it aroused. It was placed on the Index Librorum Prohibitorum 7 May 1703, though all Hobbes’s works had previously been condemned in toto, and it still remains a model of vigorous exposition, unsurpassed in the language” (Pforzheimer). Leviathan was also among the “Pernicious Books and Damnable Doctrines” proscribed by the University of Oxford and ordered to be burnt. “Pepys, in his Diary, remarks on the scarcity of this work ‘because the Bishops will not let it be printed again.’ Few books have caused more or fiercer controversy than this one… The system he constructed is the most profound materialistic system of modern times” (Rosenbach 36: 345). Hobbes concluded that an individual should, unless his life is threatened, submit to the State, because any government is better than anarchy. Later philosophical emphasis on the rights of the individual led to a decline in Hobbes’ influence, but the growth of utilitarianism led to his reassessment as “the most original political philosopher of his time” (PMM 138). “Hobbes had a fundamentally pessimistic view of human nature… [which] had a powerful influence on the framers of the [American] Constitution… During the early years of the Revolutionary period, American leaders found Locke’s revolutionary compact ideas more useful than Hobbes’ view of the unlimited authority of the state. But as the political and social experience of the 1780s seemed to bear out Hobbes’s pessimistic view that men are essentially self-interested, the Hobbesian outlook became more relevant. When John Adams wrote that ‘he who would found a state, and make proper laws for the government of it, must presume that all men are bad by nature,’ he was expressing an idea that was derived at once from Hobbes” (Lutz & Warden, A Covenanted People, 38). First issue, with “head” ornament (rather than “bear”) on letterpress title page, additional engraved title, and folding table. Wing 2246. Pforzheimer 491. Macdonald & Hargreaves 42.
Book is in good condition to fair condition. Hinges are weak but holding. Top of the front board is split in the leather. Binding is rubbed and worn in spots but overall pretty nice maintaining the original front and back boards with a new spine. Pages are in fair condtion with browing and staining throughout (some dampstaining covering 1/4 of the page and some odd darker staining that is sporadic but present on most pages). Expert repairs to 17 leaves with only one leaf having the repairs affecting the text. Edges darkened and brittle with some short tears. 10leaves haveinch size piece missing never affecting text. Engraved title relaid on new sheet. Please review the pictures.
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Leviathan 1651 Thomas Hobbes First Issue First Edition Constitution: $4,207