First American Edition of Both Volumes
TOCQUEVILLE, Alexis de. Democracy in America. Translated by Henry Reeve. Original preface and notes by John C. Spencer. New York: George Dearborn and Co.; Adlard and Saunders , 1838.
[Together with]

TOCQUEVILLE, Alexis de. Democracy in America, Part the Second, the Social Influence of Democracy. Translated by Henry Reeve. With an original preface by John C. Spencer. New York: J. & H.G. Langley, 1840.

First American edition of both volumes. Two octavo volumes. xxx, 464; xx, 355 pp.

First American edition of both volumes. The first and second volume were published separately. Octavo (Vol I: 8 3/4 x 5 1/2 inches; 220 x 145 mm; Vol II: 8 7/8 x 5 5/8 inches; 226 x 141 mm). xxx, 464pp; xx, 355, [1, blank] pp.

Volume I in publisher’s green cloth, ruled in blind and with blind-stamped arabesque background. Spine ruled and lettered in gilt panel. Spine and board edges sunned. Minor fraying and chipping to spine extremities. Boards slightly rubbed. Previous owner’s old ink signatures on front endpapers. Some light foxing throughout. A few minor pencil markings. Volume II in publisher's light brown ribbed cloth. Boards ruled in blind. Spine ruled and lettered in gilt. Yellow coated endpapers. Spine extremeties very slightly bumped. Minor dampstain and some toning to front endpapers, not affecting other leaves. Some foxing throughout. Overall a very good copy if each volume and very uncommon.

Printing and the Mind of Man describes this as "One of the most important texts on political literature" (PMM 358). It is also one of the cornerstones of Americana. De Tocqueville's treatise on America remains to this day one of the most important works about American society and its politics. It is still considered to be "the deepest, wisest, and most farseeing work ever written about America." There are chapters on geography, sociology, law, government, manners, religion, education, race relations and much more. De Tocqueville's intention in writing the work was two-fold; he wanted to describe and analyze the new democratic system in America for his fellow Europeans, and he wanted to provide a guide for political thought and action for the future of Europe, and more particularly his native France. He was looking for a "new science of politics [which] is needed for a new world" and he felt that he had found this new science in the developing America (Nisbet, The Sociological Tradition, p. 120).

Howes T238 + 284. Sabin 96064 + 96065. Printing and the Mind of Man 358 (For first French edition).

HBS # 68363 $8,500