SPL Hand Coloured Rare Book Collection Featuring Norman R Bobins

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Doctor Comicus or the Frolics of Fortune. The adventures of the doctor comicus or the frolics of fortune... a comic satirical poem for the squeamish and the queen. In twelve cantons, by modern syntax

London: B Blake, ca. 1825.
Abbey Life 253;
London: B Blake, ca. 1825.

FIRST EDITION. 269 pp. Illustrated with coloured engraved pictorial title page and 15 fine plates all coloured by hand. Bound in contemporary half diced morocco gilt over marbled boards. Fine copy with the plates bright and well preserved the text clean and fresh and the contemporary binding in mint condition. Abbey indicates that doctor Comicus was the first of the Syntax imitations. It appeared originally in 1815 in partial form including just four plates and another edition was issued in 1820 with 12. Ours is presumably a copy from that 1820 version not from the other editions of 1815 and 1828 which had 15 plates. The three original Dr. Syntax books feature a pedantic clergyman/schoolmaster meeting with an onslaught of amusing misfortunes in the course of earnest holiday travels. Told through a combination of comic verses and caricatures done by Thomas Rowlandson these misadventures constituted one of the most successful literary publications of the 19th century. The original Syntax book was conceived of as a parody of the works of picturesque travels then enjoying considerable popularity and when it met with wide acceptance itself there followed two more books as well as a considerable number of imitations. SCARCE. Coloured plates in order: 1. Frontispiece. Dr. Comicus resolves to travel. 2. Engraved title page. 3. Dr. Comicus selling his pills. 4. The Doctor and his Wig. 5. Dr. C. The Parson Clerk & Sexton 6. Attacked by Robbers. 7. The Ghost Scene 8. Drowning of Tip. 9. Interview with the Cobbler. 10. Shaving the Doctor. 11. The Upset of the Night Coach. 12. The Doctor and Attorney. 13. Presenting a Rose. 14. Dr. C buying a horse. 15. The Doctors second marriage.