Bath: Printed by C. Pope…and sold by A. Millar…, 1762. First edition. Front joint cracking, but sound. Old ownership inscription on title-page, partially cropped at top margin in the process of binding. A very good copy. Early nineteenth-century calf over marbled boards, rubbed. Octavo. , 8 (subscriber’s list), [2, errata, with blank verso], vi, 21, [1, blank]. 339 pp. Item #7692
Sarah Fielding (1710-68) was the sister of Henry Fielding and a friend of Samuel Richardson and of Jane Collier. She was the author of several novels, the best-known of which is The Adventures of David Simple, a Moral Romance (1744). She was “…one of the earliest of the English novelists to explore with close attention varying states of feeling and the roots of motive” (Oxford Companion to English Literature). She was a woman of considerable learning, and her translation of Xenophon is highly regarded. The D.N.B. notes that it includes some notes and possibly a revision by James Harris of Salisbury (the author of Hermes). It was published by subscription at Bath, where Fielding spent her final years. In a note to the preface, Fielding defends her use of the word “Memoir” for the title of the book, citing the entry in Johnson’s Dictionary and Elizabeth Carter’s use of the word (presumably in her translation of Epictetus).