MILTON, John (1608-1674). Paradise Lost. London: Printed by S. Simmons ... to be sold by T. Helder, 1669.
Small 4to (177 x 124 mm). Title-page and text within ruled border; woodcut headpieces and initials opening each book. (Without blank A1 after cancel title, F3 with paper flaw affecting rule border and shoulder notes, tiny mostly marginal wormhole to a few leaves.) Contemporary sprinkled calf, smooth spine gilt, red morocco lettering-piece gilt (some light wear to joints, discreet repair to upper hinge); half morocco folding case. Provenance: Elizabeth Gordon (signature on title verso dated 1686); Robert Chilton Pearson (bookplate); Patrick & Julie Pearson (bookplate).
FIRST EDITION, IN A CONTEMPORARY BINDING, OF “ONE OF THE GREATEST WORKS OF THE HUMAN IMAGINATION” (DNB). “In the United States, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and John Adams drew on their wide reading in Milton's poetry and prose to articulate their republicanism... Milton may rightly be regarded as one of the founding fathers of American and French republicanism” (ibid). With the cancel title-page corresponding to Amory’s fourth issue, the eighth title page with "Angel" in the imprint in italic, and no note from the printer to the reader. Amory’s subissue 4† with signature Z in the original setting with "illustrous" in line 109 of the seventh book, and with Vv reset reading "far" in line 2 ov Vvlr. Hugh Amory “Things Unattempted Yet” in The Book Collector, Spring 1983, pp. 41-66; see ESTC R13352; Grolier Wither to Prior 603; Pforzheimer 718; Wing M-2142.