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BOOKS ON RELIGION
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BENT, William, 1747-1813 – publisher : THE NEW WEEK’S PREPARATION FOR A WORTHY RECEIVING OF THE LORD’S SUPPER, AS RECOMMENDED AND APPOINTED BY THE CHURCH OF ENGLAND ...
London : for W. Bent, (1792). An interesting late eightenth-century edition of both parts of this popular devotional guide, constantly in print since its first appearance in the 1730s. The present copy was bound, almost certainly in Liverpool, for “Pudsey Dawson, Esqr. Bailiff, 1797”, whose name is unusually but prominently tooled in gilt on the upper cover. Dawson (1752-1816) was rather more than just a bailiff, serving as Mayor of Liverpool at one time (Pudsey Street is named after him and there is a portrait in the Liverpool Record Office). A man of notable piety as well as wealth, remembered as one of Liverpool’s “most active, enlightened and useful citizens”, he was also the founder of the first school for the blind in the country. An internal inscription records his gift of the book to his eldest daughter, Mary Dawson (1779-1855) on Christmas Eve, 1803.
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HALE, Mary Ann, 1796-1830 : A CATECHISM FOR CHILDREN. BY THE LATE MRS. HALE.
London : W. Simpkin and R. Marshall, 1831. First edition. An extended catechism, with a supplementary table of biblical texts pointing out various duties, sins to be avoided, threatenings to the wicked, blessings to the righteous, etc., compiled for the use of the Harewood Sunday School in Yorkshire, and prepared for publication by the local vicar, Richard Hale (1773-1854), evidently in memory of the compiler, his late wife, Mary Ann Hale, née Loft, and their short marriage of just five years.
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JONES, J.D. (John Daniel), 1865-1942 : THE GAME OF LIFE : TALKS WITH BOYS AND GIRLS.
London : National Council of Evangelical Free Churches, 1907. First edition. Twenty-nine improving talks for the young, with metaphors from sports and hobbies – cricket, golf, cycling, photography, and much else – “We are the batsmen, and we have to keep our wicket up”, etc.
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JONES, Owen, 1809-1874 – illustrator : THE BOOK OF COMMON PRAYER, AND ADMINISTRATION OF THE SACRAMENTS, AND OTHER RITES AND CEREMONIES ...
London : John Murray, 1845. First Owen Jones edition. One of the highlights of early Victorian book production and early colour printing – the text with decorative borders and initials throughout, many in colour, interspersed with divisional titles chromolithographed in gold and glowing colours, and illustrations drawn from the great masters.
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KERR, Norman (Norman Shanks), 1834-1899 : WINES : SCRIPTURAL AND ECCLESIASTICAL.
London : National Temperance Publication Depôt, . First edition. “To teach that Christ made, and the Bible approved, the social use of fermented intoxicating wine is, therefore, to teach that He made, and the Bible sanctioned the social use of, a narcotic poison, poisonous alike to body and to brain ...”. Gallant attempt to prove that all the wine in the Christian canon was non-alcoholic.
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MARCHANT, Benjamin : REMARKS AND REFLECTIONS ON SELECT PASSAGES IN THE BOOK OF PSALMS.
North Shields : by T. Appleby, 1802. A reissue of the original 1801 publication. “Principally intended, and calculated for the edification and comfort of such of the Children of God as are much exercised with temptations, and in trying circumstances”. Compiled by the local schoolmaster Benjamin Marchant of Ballast Hills – “The writing of this book has cost me many thoughts”.
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PASCAL, Blaise, 1623-1662 : PROVINCIAL LETTERS, CONTAINING AN EXPOSURE OF THE REASONING AND MORALS OF THE JESUITS.
London : Gale & Fenner, 1816. An attractive early nineteenth-century edition of Pascal’s satirical masterpiece – here called forth by Pope Pius VII’s recent restoration of the Inquisition and the revival of the Index and the Jesuits. Edward Gibbon claimed to have learnt his gift of irony from Pascal and is said diligently to have re-read this book once each year. Although first translated into English as early as 1657, there would appear to have been only one other earlier translation than the present one.
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