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TAYLOR, John (1757--1832)
Poems on various subjects, by John Taylor, Esq. In two volumes. ...
London: printed for Payne and Foss; Longman, Rees, Orme, and Co.; J. Richardson; and J. Murray, 1827.
2 vols ; 20.0 cm. (8º)
I: xxxii, 316 p.
II: xv, [1], 308 p.

Imprint of 'G. Woodfall, printer' on half-title verso and colophon. With a list of subscribers amongst whom Soane is numbered for 5 copies (vol. I, p. xxx). This compilation combines selections from Taylor's former volumes with poems written later. Taylor had recently lost control of the Sun newspaper, and this publication was conceived as a way to recover his fortunes. In a letter to Soane dated 27 October 1826, he encloses a copy of the publication proposals (Priv. Corr. IV.T.7.113, q.v.) and attributes the initiative (possibly disingenuously) to some of his 'oldest friends'; asking Soane to honour the subscription list with his name, he nevertheless assures him of a complimentary copy (Priv. Corr. IV.T.7.114). In the end Soane subscribed for five copies at Murray's, and three months later Taylor wrote to thank him, and advised him that he had 'taken the liberty of dedicating to you my version of the Odes of Anacreon'; describing how his sister has been preparing the poems for the press, he continued 'they are now all in the hands of the Printer. ...'. (Priv. Corr.IV.T.7.85, 26 January 1827). But another four months passed before the book was 'on the eve of publication …'. (Priv. Corr.IV.T.7.88, 31 May 1827). One publisher, W. Nicol, seems to have pulled out between the issuing of the proposal and publication. Despite the charitable intentions of the subscribers, the Poems provided only limited relief for Taylor. Though on January 26 he had written to Soane that the money had enabled him to get over many difficulties, by August 12 he was commenting that they had 'proved much less profitable than I expected, because the matter extended to two Volumes, instead of one, and I have, consequently, been put to double expense for Paper and printing. I am sorry to say that I have only my own pride, or vanity, to blame for this additional expense, but as I thought I should never publish any other work, I thought to pour out all my humble labours.' (Priv. Corr. IV.T.7.89). Among the occasional verses are three sonnets to Soane, one 'on the Cenotaph raised by the Bank of England to the memory of the Right Hon. William Pitt', one condoling with Soane's grief on the death of his wife, and one on his Royal Academy lectures (vol. I, pp.164—165, 174), and an epitaph on Mrs Soane (vol. II, p.248). In vol. II 'The Odes of Anacreon ...' are prefaced by an advertisement and a dedication to Soane.

Copy Notes Although Soane subscribed for five copies, only two are now in the Soane Museum.
Copy 2: Imperfect; wanting the half-title in both volumes.

Binding Copy 1: C19th polished calf, gilt roll-tooled borders, gilt-ruled spines, dark red morocco spine-labels. Probably bound by Edwin Hutchinson.
Copy 2: Later C19th green half calf, blind-tooled borders, marbled-paper boards, blind-ruled and gilt-dotted spines, maroon morocco spine-labels. Green is faintly pencilled on the front binder's leaf, indicating the desired colour of calf.

Reference Number 1396


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