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Le Théatre anglois
Le theatre anglois. Tome I. (--VIII.)
A Londres [i.e. Paris?]: 1746--49.
8 vols ; 16.3 cm. (12º)
I: cxliii, [1], 292 p., engr. frontis. port.
II: [2], 502 p.
III: [2], xxvi, 540 p.
IV: [2], 362, [2] p.
V: [4], xii, 434, [2] p.
VI: [4], 455, [1], p.
VII: viii, 523, [1] p.
VIII: [4], 480, [2] p.

A selection of English plays, translated by Pierre Antoine de La Place. The imprint is false; probably printed in Paris (cf. Barbier, A.A. Ouvrages anonymes, IV, 687,b). Title-pages in red and black, with engraved vignettes. The first four volumes were first published in Paris in 1745--6, and contain the first French translations, partly in verse partly in prose, of ten of Shakespeare's plays, mostly reworked to some extent to bring them in line with French taste, and plot summaries of twenty-six others; they are preceded by a 'Discours sur le Théâtre Anglois' by Pierre-Antoine de La Place (1707--1793), introducing French readers for the first time to Elizabethan drama. Most sets are made up from mixed editions, as here. The set described by the collation above is made up as follows: tome I, ESTC t72729; tome II, ESTC t161173; tome III, ESTC t164946; tome IV, ESTC t164948 (variant with correct pagination on p. 362); tome V, ESTC t164950; tome VI, ESTC t161177; tome VII, ESTC t161178; tome VIII, ESTC t161179. Tomes V--VIII have half titles; the date on the title-page of tome VI reads 'M.DCC.XLVII.I.', i.e. 1747 corrected to 1748.

Copy Notes Copy 1: Tome I front free-endpapers inscribed in ink John Soane 1793 and in pencil Mr Owen Grosvenor Row / Chelsea, [and] Constable. All volumes inscribed on front free-endpapers D 102 No. 6; cf. similar inscriptions on the copies of two separate compilations published under the title Le nouveau théâtre anglois in 1767 (q.v.) and 1769 (q.v.).
Copy 2: A second set of tomes I--IV only. Tomes I--II are as described for copy 1, but tome I in this copy lacks the frontispiece portrait of Shakespeare; tome III: [2], 411, [1] p., ESTC t161174; tome IV: [2], 360 p., ESTC t161175. Volume I front free-endpaper inscribed in ink John Soane 4 vols. Jan 2d 1793.

Binding Copy 1: C18th mottled calf, gilt-tooled spines, tan and olive spine-labels.
Copy 2: C18th calf, gilt triple-ruled borders, gilt-tooled spines, tan spine-labels, matching marbled edges and endpapers.

Reference Number 428


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