First edition of this brightly colored satire of high society using humanized birds.
"Then long live the PEACOCK, in splendour unmatch'd / Whose Ball shall be talk'd of, by Birds yet unhatch'd."
Catherine Ann Dorset wrote this humorous poem as a sequel to William Roscoe's THE BUTTERFLY'S BALL; its great success launched her career as a writer, and she collaborated with her sister Charlotte on several titles. But her gender drew the ire of male critics–one suggested "if a lady wishes to avail herself of her sex, let her go to tea parties, where compliments are currency." (The Gentleman's Magazine, March 1808)
This immensely popular book was re-issued several times during 1807 according to Moon; later issues contained additional ornithological note, the lack of which places this copy as the earliest. Its vibrantly (and sometimes creatively) colored plates make this copy a real gem.
Read more: Moon, John Harris's Books for Youth, 215.
London: Printed for J. Harris, successor to E. Newbery, 1807. Full title: The peacock 'at home:' a sequel to the butterfly's ball. Written by a Lady. 4.5'' x 4.25''. Later cream boards with manuscript title label to front. Full-page hand-colored frontispiece with five hand-colored illustrations. 16 pages. Early owner's name "Elizabeth Pearson" in ink to rear of frontispiece. Some light soiling to boards. Pages uniformly lightly toned, occasional offsetting from illustrations; some bleed-through to rears of plates. Colors bright.
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