1855 Rare Book - Letters on Demonology and Witchcraft - WITCHES & FAIRIES by Walter Scott.
Author: Scott, Sir Walter.
Title: Letters on Demonology and Witchcraft Addressed to J.G. Lockhart, Esq.
Publisher: New York, Harper & Brothers, 1855.
Language: Text in English.
Size: 6.5 " X 4 ".
Pages: 338 pages.
Binding: Attractive and very good original full cloth binding (hinges fine, slightly scuffed and worn - as shown) under a protective removable mylar cover.
Content: Very good content (bright, tight, and clean, light foxing and staining throughout - as shown, small ink stain on the outer lower edge, antique Montreal bookstore stamp and previous owner address on the first endpaper - as shown).
Illustrations: Complete with the nice frontispiece illustration of the Bow in Edinburgh.
Estimate: (USD 300 - USD 500)
The book: Rare early American edition of Letters on Demonology and Witchcraft in a nice quarter leather binding. -- In ill health following a stroke, Sir Walter Scott wrote Letters on Demonology and Witchcraft at the behest of his son-in-law, J. G. Lockhart, who worked for a publishing firm. Letters was written when educated society believed itself in enlightened times due to advances in modern science. Letters, however, revealed that all social classes still held beliefs in ghosts, witches, warlocks, fairies, elves, diabolism, the occult, and even werewolves. Sourcing from prior sixteenth- and seventeenth-century treatises on demonology along with contemporary accounts from England, Europe, and North America (Cotton Mather's Magnalia Christi, for one), Scott's discourses on the psychological, religious, physical, and preternatural explanations for these beliefs are essential reading for acolytes of the dark and macabre; the letters dealing with witch hunts, trials (Letters Eight and Nine), and torture are morbidly compelling. Scott was neither fully pro-rational modernity nor totally anti-superstitious past, as his skepticism of one of the "new" sciences (skullology, as he calls it) is made clear in a private letter to a friend. Thus, Letters is both a personal and intellectual examination of conflicting belief systems, when popular science began to challenge superstition in earnest.
The author: Sir Walter Scott, 1st Baronet FRSE (15 August 1771 – 21 September 1832) was a Scottish historical novelist, poet, playwright and historian. Many of his works remain classics of both English-language literature and of Scottish literature. Famous titles include Ivanhoe, Rob Roy, Old Mortality, The Lady of the Lake, Waverley, The Heart of Midlothian and The Bride of Lammermoor.
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1855 Rare Book - Letters on Demonology and Witchcraft - WITCHES & FAIRIES by Walter Scott. Price List