Wilson, Harriette - Harriette Wilson's Memoirs. Folio Society 1st, 1964. English demi-mondaine [a woman considered to be outside respectable society], was born in Mayfair, London, of French descent. Her long career as a genteel courtesan [prostitute; the mistress of a man of rank] began at the age of fifteen with the Earl of Craven; subsequent paramours included the Duke of Argyll, the Duke of Wellington, the Marquis of Worcester and a host of others. All these figured in her lively but libellous Memoirs, brought out in parts from 1825 to the accompaniment of a barrage of suggestive advance publicity aimed at blackmail of the victims, most of whom echoed the celebrated outburst of Wellington on the occasion - 'Publish and be dammed!'. (Chambers Biographical Dictionary). 10" x 6¼", 378pp plus 12 plates, purple art-silk, gold spine lettering and decoration, hardback. Index. The illustrations, monochrome, are taken from the 1825 edition. Sunned spine (average for this edition); light edge-foxing; slight endpaper foxing; name and date written at top of ront-free endpaper; very good (no bumps, not ex-library) complete with very good ('Harriette Wilson' neatly written at the top of one side; 'foxing' along edges; sunning) sound, original slip-case.
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