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[RUDD, E.M.] Reflections relating to the Malvern Hills. 1814


A rare 'romantic' essay - a single copy recorded in America 8. [RUDD, E.M.] Reflections relating to the Malvern Hills, with occasional descriptions. [6], 77, [1]p. A very good large copy, uncut in original linen cloth boards, paper spine label. Some uneven fading to the cloth on the upper board. JISC records 4 copies only (BL, Oxford, Liverpool, Society of Antiquaries). FirstSearch adds just a single copy in America (North Carolina). 8vo. B. and R. Crosby and Co. 1814. ~ A very scarce and early essay in romantic sensibility, in which the author's "object was privately to record, for his own gratification, some of the impressions raised in him at Malvern." It is written in the form of a guide with extended aesthetic discussions on the picturesque conducted in the form of a philosophical dialogue between two travellers. "Acad.- You use the word 'picturesque', in Price's sense, and admit his third principle in nature, as a principle or 'genus, distinct from the beautiful, no less a writer than Dugald Stewart rejects it? Vigorn.- I here take it for granted. And according to the notion just stated, the hills, with their broken, misty prospects, on each side, are the picturesque combined with the sublime, the sublime, I think, predominating. And on a clear day... the three principles are mixed together" pp.19-20. Although noted as anonymous in NSTC, the author is identified in Chambers's General History of Malvern, 1817. He was a Fellow of Oriel College, Oxford, and Clerk of Kempsey, Worcs. He died in 1849, aged 74, and the sale of his library was announced in the Worcester Journal in 1851. A senior fellow at a very young age in 1819, Rudd cut an unusual figure in Oxford, decorated with a pigtail, and ‘gaudy’ in black shorts. [ref: Burgon,J.E. Lives of Twelve Good Men, 1888.]