London: Moses Bell for George Thomason, 1647. Three parts in one. Folio. [xvi], 119, ; 128; 115 pp. FIRST EDITION. Title in red and black with engraved printer’s device, text within ruled borders, woodcut initial, head- and tailpieces. Contemporary calf, rebacked, spine label; red fore-edge, interior in excellent condition. Item #17547
First edition. May (c. 1596–1650) was a historian, poet, playwright, classical scholar, and lawyer. Appointed secretary of the newly established Long Parliament in 1640, he was commissioned to write this history. May was an ardent supporter of the Parliament and armed with his extensive knowledge of classical sources, he painted the Stuarts as the destroyers of England. He begins with the reign of Elizabeth I and ends with the siege of Gloucester, where the Parliamentarian army soundly defeated the Royalist forces of Charles I. Thus May ends his history on a triumphal note for the Parliament.