CHRONICLE AT LARGE, AND MEERE HISTORY OF THE AFFAYRES OF ENGLANDE AND KYNGES OF THE SAME, Deduced From the Creation of the World Unto the First First Habitation of Thys Islande.... The Second Volume, Beginning at William the Conquerour, Endeth Wyth

Price: 28,500.00 USD

(London: Henry Denham, dwelling in Patermoster Rowe, for Richarde Tottle and Humffrey Toy, 1569 [Second Part dated 1568), GRAFTON'S GREAT CHRONICLE, CONTAINING Sir Thomas More'S COMPLETE HISTORY OF RICHARD III, THE SOURCE OF WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE. "Among the [early English printers). Richard Grafton holds a distinguished place. In conjunction with Edward Whitchurch, he was concerned in the publication of the English Bibles of 1537 and 1539, printed at Antwerp and Paris respectively, and afterwards began printing on his own account, his press being largely occupied with the production of service books, for the printing of which he and Whitchurch obtained an exclusive patent in 1544. In 1547, he was appointed printer to king Edward VI, arid several of the issues of the Book of Common Prayer bear his imprint. On the death of the king, miscalculating the drift of political events, he printed the proclamation of lady Jane Grey and was deprived of his office by Queen Mary. Besides issuing John Hardyng's Chronicle in 1543, and editions of Edward Hall's Union of Lancaster and York in 1548 and 1550, Grafton himself compiled an Abridgement of the Chronicles of England, which was published by his son-in-law Richard Tottel in 1562, and A Chronicle at Large, issued also by Tottel in 1569." (Cambridge History of English and American Literature, Vol. IV. Ch. XVIII. The Book-Trade, 1557-1625.) Grafton's "Chronicle" includes numerous mentions of Sir Thomas More, including his appointment as chancellor (p. 1184), his subsequent discharge from that office (p. 1209) and eventual execution (p. 1226). The work also includes several orations by More (pp. 1060, 1076, 1185) and, most spectacularly, the complete English text of More's "History of Richard III (pp. 801-53), the source of Shakespeare's "Richard III". "More's 'History of Richard III' stands out as one of the great masterpieces of Renaissance historiography. The extensive use of orations, reported speech and dialogue (almost half the total text) gives the work an inherently dramatic quality, enhanced in the minds of minds of many modern readers by Shakespeare's use of it as the principle literary source for "The Tragedy of King Richard III" - Gibson, Saint Thomas More, a Primary Biography. Two Volumes bound as one. First Edition. A handsome woodcut title page with three-quarter portraits of Biblical and English kings, including William the Conqueror and Henry VIII. The second volume is introduced by an elaborate woodcut title border. The lower compartment shows Elizabeth enthroned. Large woodcuts, some of which are attributed to Virgil Solis (1514-1562). introduce the first seven books. Large historiated initials throughout out. A half-paged printer's device appears on the final leaf. Folio, bound to period style, the spine with raised bands. A complete and excellent copy. The title page has been expertly strengthened, and one leaf of the "to the reader" has been remargined.


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