London: Thomas Harper, 1631.
Hardcover. Good. First edition. 4to., [xvi] 871 [14 index] pp, extra engraved title page by Thomas Cecil, eighteen woodcut illustrations (six full-page). Foliation can be supplied upon request. Text is printed within a ruled frame, with headpieces, tailpieces, and floriated initials. Contemporary full polished calf with hand-tooled decorative borders in blind to both boards, six raised bands, red morocco label with gilt lettering on backstrip, edges speckled red. A good copy, internally bright and crisp with light scattered foxing, lacks the portrait of John Weever but has the extra engraved title-page and original index, the original title-page appears to have been carefully cut along the margins and mounted on what was formerly the ffep, the engraved title-page is similarly mounted on a blank leaf from the book that has been detached and slipped in, covers are rubbed and scuffed, joints are shaken and split though still attached .Notwithstanding these defects, the contents are clean, intact, and very good. In addition to being a discourse on its subject, this work is a compilation with commentary on epitaphs, arms and inscriptions on tombs, monuments, church windows et al. The work focuses on the dioceses of Canterbury, London, Norwich and Rochester. Lowndes and DNB (both citing Wharton’s Anglia Sacra) note that John Weever (1576-1632)—poet, anthologist, and antiquary—made extensive errors in the interpretation of numbers and in transcription. However both note the work’s great utility to historians and biographers. Writing in 1899, Sidney Lee (who wrote the Weever entry in DNB) points out that “ ...almost all sepulchral inscriptions [in Weever] are now obliterated,” and that “despite its defects [Weever’s book] is invaluable.” This copy conforms to the collation and pagination in ESTC S118104 and the Melvyl/UCR record. Recorded copies are often defective, lacking either preliminary blanks, engraved title-page, the frontis portrait or the index. STC (2nd) 25223. Lowndes, p. 2867-68. NCBEL 1:1158; NUC 653, p. 270.