Sep 17, 2009 - Sale 2186

Sale 2186 - Lot 59

Price Realized: $ 57,600
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 40,000 - $ 60,000
(BIBLE IN ENGLISH. BOOK OF PSALMS.) The Psalms, Hymns, and Spiritual Songs of the Old and New Testament, Faithfully Translated into English Metre. For the Use, Edification and Comfort of the Saints in Publick and Private, Especially in New-England. 84 pages. 12mo, contemporary blind-tooled calf, worn; moderate dampstaining and edge wear, tightly trimmed just grazing catchword on E4, rear endpapers soiled; early owners' inscriptions on free endpapers. Bound after a defective Edinburgh Bible lacking six leaves including title page (see below). Cambridge (England?): printed for Hezekiah Usher, of Boston, circa 1669-82

Additional Details

The 1640 Bay Psalm Book was the first book printed in British North America, a new translation of the Psalms done by colonists Richard Mather, John Eliot, and Thomas Weld, with an introduction attributed to Mather or John Cotton. It went through several editions, all extremely scarce today. The hypothetical date of this edition is often given as 1682, as two of the other known copies were found bound with 1682 Bibles, but no other works with a Hezekiah Usher Boston imprint are known past 1669, and the bookseller of that name died in 1676. Holmes, Minor Mathers 53-GG; Sabin 66435; Winship, Cambridge Press, pages 95-97. Provenance: Nicholas Wade inscription, 1734; Thomas Wade inscription, 1737; Meadows collection. No pre-1690 copy has appeared on the auction market since 1983. ESTC lists only 3 copies of this edition, with one of those quite defective.
The first section of the volume is a Bible printed in Edinburgh, an edition which does not seem to appear in Herbert or ESTC, similar to Herbert 1000 but with the New Testament title page bearing the 1728 Edinburgh imprint of John Mosman and William Brown.