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CAMPBELL, Colen (1676--1729)
[Vitruvius Britannicus. 1731]
Vitruvius Britannicus, or the British architect, containing the plans, elevations, and sections of the regular buildings, both publick and private, in Great Britain, with variety of new designs; in 200 large folio plates, engraven by the best hands; and drawn either from the buildings themselves, or the original designs of the architects; in II volumes ... by Colen Campbell Esqr. [parallel title in French].
(The third volume of Vitruvius Britannicus: or, the British architect. Containing the geometrical plans of the most considerable gardens and plantations; also the plans, elevations, and sections of the most regular buildings, not published in the first and second volumes. ... By Colen Campbell, ... [parallel title in French].)

London: printed in the year 1731.
3 vols ; 44.5 cm. (2°)
I: 12 p., engr. t.-pl., engr. dedic., 100 [i.e. 84] pl. (14 double-page or fold. bearing 2 numbers)
II: 12 p., engr. t.-pl., 100 [i.e. 74] pl. (17 double-page or fold. bearing 2 or 4 numbers)
III: [2], 12 p., 100 [i.e. 73] pl. (24 double-page or fold. bearing 2 numbers)

Imprint from letterpress title-page in vol. III only. This is the third edition of volumes I and II (first published in 1715 and 1717 respectively) and the second of vol. III (not part of the work as originally planned, and first published in 1725). The first two volumes have the third state of the title-plate with the imprint and original dates of publication - 1715 and 1717 - erased. The letterpress title-page in vol. III is printed in red and black. This was the first edition to have the letterpress in all three volumes printed in French and English as implied by the title-plate. For detailed accounts of the background of Vitruvius Britannicus, "arguably the most influential and original British architectural book ever published" (BAL 3544), of Campbell's authorship and the importance of the Palladian theme, see Harris and Savage, pp. 139--148; Millard II, pp. 45--63, and notes to BAL, Early printed books, no. 3544 (vols I--II, 1st ed.) and nos. 3546 and 3547 (vol. III, 1st ed., 1st and 2nd impressions). Volume III of the Soane copy has the variant setting of leaf C2v (p. 12) calling for plate 101 of Umberslade. This however is (as usual) not present in this copy. See the BAL catalogue entries cited above for lists of the plates in each volume. ESTC n56037; Harris and Savage 102; Millard II, 10.

Copy Notes Imperfect; wanting plates 59 and 60 of Wilton in vol. III. Volume I is inscribed in ink on the title-plate W. Chambers 4½ guineas and Archd Campbell. The title-page to vol. III similarly inscribed but without the reference to the price, and the title-plate to vol. II without Chambers's name or price.

Binding C18th mottled calf, gilt-tooled spines, red morocco spine-labels.

Reference Number 1839


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