VISION OF WILLIAM CONCERNING PIERS THE PLOWMAN In Three Parallel Texts. Together with Richard the Redeless. Edited From Numerous Manuscripts, With Preface, Notes, and a Glossary by the Rev. Walter W. Skeat, Litt. D., Ll.D.

(Oxford: At the Clarendon Press, 1886).

SCARCE FIRST EDITION IN ORIGINAL CLOTH, AND THIS AN ESPECIALLY DESIRABLE SET. Skeat’s edition, with its scholarly notes, preface and useful glossary, is the definitive printing of this work. The first volume contains the text and the second volume contains the Preface, Notes, Glossary, and Index.
Very little is known for sure about the life of William Langland (c. 1362-1399]--indeed, there is discussion about whether "he" was a single poet--but his poem (or group of poems) entitled "The Vision of William Concerning Piers the Plowman" was very popular in the latter half of the fourteenth century, and remained popular throughout the fifteenth century. The leaders of the reformation in the sixteenth century considered it an inspiration and a prophecy, and in modern times it has been quoted by every historian of the fourteenth century as "the most vivid and trustworthy source for the social and economic history of the time." Item #29314

2 volumes. Scarce first edition, first printing of Skeat's important edition. Thick 8vo, in the publisher's original blue/black cloth, lettered in gilt on spines in blackletter style and with gilt ruled lines and publisher’s emblems gilt. viii, 628; xciii, 484, 32 ads pp. An especially pleasing and handsome set of the scarce first edition, the cloth fresh and clean, the gilt strong and bright. The hinges and text-block solid and fine, the text-blocks clean and fresh, some very neat scholarly marginalia, penciled in a very light hand.

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Price: $295.00