Samuel Johnson. Irene. 1781. First edition.


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Samuel Johnson. Irene. A Tragedy. As it is Acted at the Theatre Royal in Drury-Lane. London: J. Dodsley, 1781. A new edition (the third English, following editions published in 1749 and 1754 by James Dodsley's brother's, the better known Robert Dodsley). Octavo (8.125 x 5.125 inches; 205 x 130 mm.). [3-4, title leaf (verso blank)], 5-94 pages (lacking half-title and ads). Contemporary cord binding, lacking boards and backstrip, with mid-twentieth century plain light greenish-brown oversized wrappers with sticker label affixed the the front; all edges of the text block trimmed; rear free endpaper. Spine leaning; wrappers worn with a few minor tears; small interior hole on the front wrapper. Text foxed in the margins; occasional trivial wear to the page edges; a couple soft creases to the upper corners; previous ownership signature on the title page crossed out, still dated 1796; short closed tear in the gutter margin of the final leaf. Text very good. Samuel Johnson's only play. Courtney and Smith, pp. 24-25; ESTC T68212; NCBEL Volume II, p. 1129; Rothschild Library 1231-1232 (first and second editions only). (#10325).