Letters Written by the Late Right Honourable Philip Dormer Stanhope, Earl of Chesterfield, to His Son, Philip Stanhope, Esq

Late Envoy Extraordinary at the Court of Dresden: Together with Several Other Pieces on Various Subjects. Published by Mrs Eugenia Stanhope from the Originals Now in Her Possession

CHESTERFIELD, Earl of

CHESTERFIELD, Earl of Letters Written by the Late Right Honourable Philip Dormer Stanhope, Earl of Chesterfield, to His Son, Philip Stanhope, Esq Late Envoy Extraordinary at the Court of Dresden: Together with Several Other Pieces on Various Subjects. Published by Mrs Eugenia Stanhope from the Originals Now in Her Possession

Printed for J. Dodsley, 1775.

Sixth edition. Four volumes, Finely bound by Bumpus in half brown crushed morocco over marbled boards. Lettered in gilt on the spine. All edges speckled. Marbled endpapers. Black and white frontis of Chesterfield. A near fine set, intermittently foxed and spines lightly sunned. Book plate of previous owner to each front pastedown.

The Fourth Earl of Chesterfield (1694-1773) was a British Statesman, man of letters and acclaimed wit of his time. This work consists of over 400 letters, sent to his illegitimate son, Philip Stanhope, giving advice on how to conduct himself, from the time he started at Westminster School in 1737 until his death in 1768. When the letters were first published Samuel Johnson, who disliked Chesterfield, described them as teaching "the morals of a whore and the manners of a dancing master". Dickens later caricatured him as the villainous Sir John Chester in Barnaby Rudge (1841). However although the letters, which were never intended for publication, concentrate on how to achieve worldly success, with a guide to manners and the art of pleasing, his advice is shrewd and presented with wit and elegance. Ironically, Chesterfield's painstaking advice seems to have fallen on deaf ears: his son was described by contemporaries as "loutish".

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