Letters Of the Right Honourable Lady M---y W---y M----e: Written, during her Travels in Europe, Asia and Africa, to Persons of Distinction, Men of Letters, &c. in different Parts of Europe. Which contain, Among other curious Relations, Accounts of the Policy and Manners of the Turks; Drawn from Sources that have been inaccessible to other Travellers.

MONTAGU Lady Mary Wortley (1763.)

£550.00  [First Edition]

Available to view at our Curzon Street shop.

Letters from Constantinople

First Edition. 3 vols in 2. Small 8vo. Later 18th-century half calf with marbled paper-covered boards, red morocco label with gilt titling to spine; joints of vol. 1 repaired, those of vol. 2 cracked but holding firmly. Bound without the half-titles. [3], vi-xii, [4], 165, [1]; [2], 167, [1]; [2], 134pp. London: for T. Becket and P. A. De Hondt,

With: MONTAGU (Lady Mary Wortley). An Additional Volume to the Letters Of the Right Honourable Lady M---y W----y M----e: ... First Edition. Small 8vo. 142pp. London: for T. Becket and P. A. De Hondt, 1767.

Born Mary Pierrepont in 1689, the daughter of the Duke of Kingston, the author taught herself both Latin and Greek. In 1712 she caused a sensation by eloping with Edward Wortley Montagu. When, in 1716, he was appointed Ambassador to Turkey she decided to accompany him. They arrived in Constantinople after a six-month Grand Tour in the Spring of 1717 and returned in July 1718. The letters present in this book are those that Lady Mary wrote home to her friends. She edited them for publication, but they were only printed after her death. 

"Lady Mary's letters... revealed to their readers for the first time what lay behind the jeweled curtain of the East: and it was not all they might have expected. The slaves of the seraglio, she said, were far less put upon than servants back home, and Turkish women had far more liberty than English women. Disguised and unrecognisable in their capes and veils they lived delicious lives of perpetual masquerade: the perfect front for intrigue and adventurism".

The additional volume, considered by most bibliographers to be a forgery, ends with Pope's verses on her and a general table to both volumes.

Blackmer 1150; Robinson, Wayward Women, pp.32-34; Rothschild 1452.


Stock Code: 60372

close zoom-in zoom-out close zoom