Simmons, 1669. 1st Edition. Hardcover. Very Good. Item #1711025
This one of the original 1,200 first edition copies printed in 1667 by the publisher Simmons. Simmons issued the first edition over a few years, adding a different title page from time to time. By the time the 1200 copies of the first run had sold out, seven different variations of the title page has been produced, bearing dates of 1667, 1668 and 1669. There is no known relationship between when a given copy of the TEXT itself was printed, and the title page it bears. Thus, the first printed copy of the 1200 copies could just as easily have a 1669 title page as one dated 1667 or 1668. It was just a matter of what copy the publisher pulled out of the original pile, and attached a title page. In addition, the bibliographer Hugh Amory argued convincingly that the 1668 title page was probably issued earlier than the one bearing the date 1667. In this case the title page bears the full name of the author and the year 1669. In addition, this copy includes the important preliminary matter that Milton added during 1668 after the first copies were issued. These include "The Argument," in which Milton describes the program of each of the ten books, and "The Verse," in which Milton defends his choice of using blank verse rather than rhyme. Very good condition, in leather binding and gold gilt-edged pages, housed in a custom-made collector's slipcase.