Christian Rules Proposed to the Vertuous Soul Aspiring to Holy Perfection, whereby to regulate both her time and actions for the obtaining her blessed end.

CLIFFORD, William (1665)


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Third Edition. 8vo. [Text: 164 x 103 mm]. [30 (of 32, without the first blank leaf)], 399, [1] pp. A small hole in the lower outer blank corner of Aa4 (no loss), some light soiling and browning throughout. Contemporary calf (rebacked, preserving part of the original spine, corners and edges bumped and chipped, new endleaves).

[London:] Printed in the year, 1665.

Wing C4711. Clancy 229. ESTC/Clancy list + in UK; Moore Theological College in Australia; W. A. Clark Library, Folger, Huntington, Texas, Union Theological Seminary, Yale in USA.

The first edition appeared in [Paris] 1655 (Wing C4710, Downside & Ware only) and was dedicated to Mrs. Ursula Clifford. The second edition “Reuewed [sic], corrected, and augmented by the author” appeared in [Paris] 1659 (Wing C4711, NYPL & Texas only in USA). By this edition, the dedication had been changed to “The most noble and renowned Catholicks of his majesties three Kingdoms”. Clifford notes that because “no more coppies of that edition [the second edition of 1659] could be found” he has taken the opportunity “to review the same treatise once more” (A3v) in the hopes that his revisions and expansions will “conduce to the good of their [his countrymen’s] souls” (ibid.).

The work consists of a series of rules and guidelines governing everything from prayer to “beholding the beauty and comely order of the world” (106), and methods of dealing with anger and “choler” (319).

William Clifford (1594-1670) “was descended from the family of the barons Clifford, to which he became male heir in 1643, but his humility prevented him from asserting an erroneous claim to the barony. He was educated in St. Alban’s, the English College at Valladolid, where he was ordained priest and after a short stay in Douai he was sent to England” (ODNB). Clifford eventually returned to the continent to become vice-president and procurator of the English College at Lisbon. Between 1655 and 1658 he was recommended to become Vicar Apostolic but he declined this honour. Clifford wrote one other work of spiritual direction, A Little Manual of the Poor Man’s Dayly Devotion (1669).

Stock Code: 61785

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