THE WATER OF LIFE
Although lacking the title page, there are two early dates written in the book on endpapers -- 1764 and 1768. The first owner wrote in his name (now faded) and "his book, 1764" on final blank endpaper. And the date of 1768 is written at top of front paste-down endpaper. Any early edition of this John Bunyan religious work is scarce, and the number of editions are quite limited. There was an apparent renewal of interest in this work in the mid 1700's. One early bibliographer noted that there were editions in 1760, 1763 and 1768. Our book could obviously be from either of the first two, but the pagination clearly points to this being the 1760 edition, which was published by a "James Bunyan" who probably adopted the author's last name to make his book more salable. The British Library has a copy of the 1760 edition, with 126 pages as in our copy. All other 18th century editions noted in the British Library catalogue have different paginations. The Bodleian Library lacks a copy of the 1760 edition. This copy, though lacking the title page, is textually complete beginning with the Epistle to the Reader. It was simply bound in full leather, no doubt intended as a schoolbook. It comes with a New Hampshire provenance, and by the look of it it could even be an early American Colonial imprint based on the London imprint. The simple printer's device at head of first page of text is similar to a pattern used by John Mycall the Boston printer. Without a title page, that is pure speculation however. The leather covers scuffed and edgeworn but with a pleasing patina of age. First few leaves of content to page ten hanging on just by a thread or they would have disappeared along with the preliminary leaves. Pages considerably browned and with some age spotting and staining. Still an acceptable study copy of a hard to find book. Bookseller Inventory # 1395
Title: THE WATER OF LIFE
Publisher: James Bunyan (pseudonym?) Presumed
Publication Date: 1760
Book Condition: Poor
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Daryl Rule, bookseller IOBA
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