1822. London: R. Ackermann, 1822.
8vo in 4s, (iv), 267, (1, directions to the binder) pp. With 24 handcolored aquatints by Rowlandson. Pages 257-264 misnumbered 249-256. Crushed red morocco extra by Riviere for Sotheran's. A near fine copy, with occasional toning and some offsetting of the plates. Bookplate of Philander Chase Knox (1853-1921), former United States Attorney General and Senator from Pennsylvania.
§ First collected edition, first issued in eight parts 1821-1822. The last of the genuine or 'authorized' Syntax books, pitched to the public in the introduction as the English Gil Blas: "The Favor which has been bestowed on the different tours of Dr. Syntax has encouraged the writer of them to give a 'History of the Foundling,' who has been thought an interesting object in the latter of these volumes, and it is written in the same style and manner with a view to connect it with them. This child of chance, it is presumed, is led through a track of life not unsuited to the peculiarity of his condition and character, while its varieties, as in the former works, are represented by the pencil of Mr. Rowlandson with its characteristic felicity. The idea of an English Gil Blas predominated through the while of the volume."
This was Combe's last collaboration with Rowlandson, published just a year before the former's death a 82. "In 1819 Ackermann put Combe on an allowance of £400 a year paid in monthly instalments. Like many a chronic debtor before him the evidence in Combe's journals shows that he spent much of his money on extravagances. It was clear that he found it irresistible to buy hats for his current favourite young ladies, including no doubt young Angelica Ackermann. She in turns gave presents to the charming old man. He was sadly missed by father and daughter when he died in 1823 aged eighty-two. (Ford, Ackermann, p.60). Abbey, Life, 268; Tooley, 413. Item #123317