1785. London: Henry Baldwin for Charles Dilly, 1785.
8vo, xx, (ii), -534, (1, advertisement for Life of Johnson)pp. Uncut in original boards; complete with half title and terminal blank. Backstrip sensitively restored, boards soiled and worn at edges, some dampstaining to front endpapers, half title, and title, some loss to terminal blank, bookplate; withal a very pleasing copy in a custom leather box.
§ Second edition, revised and corrected. A lovely copy, uncut in the original boards, and uncommon thus. Pottle notes that the second edition was issued in boards at 6s. and also bound, "All copies I have seen are full-bound in calf."
Boswell's account of a three month tour of the Highlands and islands of Scotland, which he made in the company of Samuel Johnson in 1773. Johnson's own account, A Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland, had been published in 1775. While Johnson's book sticks to the sober description of topography and history that was expected from travel books of the time, Boswell's book "has the chatty informality of a 'rough' guide: its focus is on Johnson, as it describes his charged encounters with the native population, whether humble cottagers or important personages like Lord Monboddo and Boswell's formidable father Lord Auchinleck" (Oxford DNB).
"The principal changes made in the second edition, besides the correction of some printer's errors, are the removal of a few errors of fact, and a large number of slight verbal changes in the interest of grammar and elegance; the addition of the Contents, two Appendixes, and a number of notes explanatory or controversial; and the substitution (pp. 165-6) of a softened account of the stay with Sir Alexander Macdonald for the too frank disclosures of the original narrative' (Chapman, p. xvii). As quoted in Pottle, Boswell's Literary Career, 59. Item #124582