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Heywood, Thomas. [First word in Greek, transliterated as] Gynaikeion: or, nine bookes of various history. Concerninge women; inscribed by ye names of ye nine Muses. London: Printed by Adam Islip, 1624. Folio (30.2 cm; 11.875"). , 466,  pp. Lacks preliminary blank (only). $3,000.00
Early encyclopedia of women's biography and history covering over 3000 mythical and actual figures, with an engraved title-page depicting the nine muses, each holding an object appropriate to her attribute, as well as Apollo holding a sun and harp. Heywood (ca. 1573–1641), a prominent poet and playwright, here ends almost a decade publication-free with a "volume celebrat[ing] strong women throughout history, from mythological goddesses to earthly leaders such as Queen Elizabeth and Queen Anne" (DNB).
Each book revolves around the themes appropriate to its sovereign muse to cover, in the end, almost any topic imaginable, from mythological women's effects on the functioning of the universe to the expectations and proper execution of marital duties to the finer points of witchcraft, among others, using a mixture of prose and verse and lots of wonderful epithets. Numerous women, both virtuous and wicked, are also individually discussed, from Greek mythology to the present day.
ESTC S119701; STC (2nd ed.), 13326. 18th-century speckled calf, highly polished covers nicely panelled in blind with well-proportioned rules and rolls, board edges ruled in gilt; rebacked with modern black leather gilt spine label, new endpapers, and preliminary blank (only) lacking. Light and limited waterstaining to top margins, light age-toning with the occasional spot, some very minor marginal wormtracking, and a few creases or short closed tears; a handful of small holes affecting type but not sense, one lost corner not affecting type. Occasional ink/pencil markings, generally minimalist but in one case flourishing into a memorable manicule. => Interesting reading from a variety of perspectives in a handsome and well designed volume. (37283) Please RESHELVE This.
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