London: E. Curll & J. Pemberton, 1716. 8vo. lvii, [vii], 448 pp. FIRST EDITION. Woodcut head- and tailpieces. An excellent copy in period-style full calf. Item #12019
First edition. Published by “the unspeakable Curll.” The compositions include Blackmore’s essays on epic poetry, wit, false virtue, immortality of the soul, laws of nature, and origin of civil power.
Blackmore (1650-1729) was a prolific writer in verse and prose. Though he authored medical treatises and theological works, he was probably one of the most unjustly ridiculed writers of the eighteenth century. He was a supporter of the Revolution and was knighted in 1697. He served as personal physician to both William III and to Queen Anne. He was quite highly regarded by Dr. Johnson as one of “the first favorites of the English muse”; Johnson was later to write a biography of Blackmore.