POPE, Alexander. Of the Uses of Riches, An Epistle to the Right Honorable Allen Lord Bathurst. , 20 pp. Folio, 325 x 195 mm, bound in new red morocco with gilt lettered spine. London: Lawton Gilliver, 1732.
First Edition of one of the earliest books tracts dealing with philanthropy in architecture, art and social justice. This copy with first issue points as in Griffith.
Pope's Epistle to his friend Bathurst is an insightful discourse, full of vivid Biblical imagery, on the corrupt ways of the city and the avarice of the newly rich. The generosity of the "Man of Ross"- planting trees, establishing a reservoir for the local inhabitants- is contrasted with the selfishness of "Balaam", the grasping, corrupt merchant from the heart of the metropolis. "Pope achieves in the poem a traditionalism of an alert and alive kind which does not evade the challenges and menaces of his time" (Erskine-Hill).
The "Man of Ross" surely alludes to Alan Bathurst, who was known for his generosity. Pope was a frequent guest at the former's estates of Riskins and Cirencester, and the two men often exchanged views on garden design and architecture. A fine copy of an important work.
Lowndes V, 1919. Griffith 280. M. Mack, Alexander Pope: a Life (1985) 515. H. Erskine-Hill, The Social Milieu of Alexander Pope (1975) 259. See: Lees-Milne, Earls of Creation.
Item nr. 157574