Contemporary full paneled calf, double-fillet borders rolled in blind, triple-fillet center compartment rolled in blind with blind floral stamps at corners, spines tooled in gilt in compartments, five raised bands, gilt red morocco lettering piece, gilt board edges, all edges sprinkled red. Very occasional light spotting. Faint moisture stains to outer top and fore-edges of volume I, most visible on last two signatures. Boards with some edgewear, three of four headcaps perished, joints starting but boards still holding tight. Some spotting to boards. Frontispiece slightly darkened. Overall a very attractive, notably clean and bright copy.
"Probably no other poet's works have been so often copied or printed, and hundreds of versions in every modern language have been made of the least translatable of poets. Certainly Horace far outstrips all competitors when it comes to pocket editions: all over the world, where the libraries or even the smaller collections of personalia of the great have been preserved, a well-worn pocket Horace is very frequently among them. ... In 1711 Bentley was fighting against the angry fellows of Trinity College, Cambridge, who were petitioning the College Visitor, the Bishop of Ely, to remove him from the Mastership. Bentley wished to enlist the support of the Crown (which appoints the master), and he did it -- by dedicating his edition of Horace to Harley, then Prime Minister.
"Bentley (1662-1742) was and remains the greatest of English classical scholars. His reputation was made by his Dissertation on Phalaris, the final crushing blow in the 'Battle of the Books' ... His immense learning was combined with an equal control in its deployment. Athough he here restricted himself entirely to criticism of the text, and refrained from comment or explanation, in fact his feeling for Horace is revealed in the seven or eight hundred emendations, many of which have found permanent acceptance. Bold yet sensitive, deeply learned and at the same time understanding, his edition is a compound, as Bentley was himself, of temerity, authority and subtlety" (Printing and the Mind of Man, pp. 106-107).
Printing and the Mind of Man 178.
HBS # 65380 $2,500