The Works of Laurence Sterne
London: J. Mozley, 1795. Eight duodecimo volumes, nineteenth-century three-quarter rose calf gilt, green calf spine labels, marbled boards. Bookplates to front pastedowns, expert paper repairs to heads of titles, bound without frontispiece portrait. Tiny chip to spine label of Volume I, not affecting text.
Beautifully bound eighteenth-century set of Sterne's works, including Tristram Shandy, Sermons of Mr. Yorick, Letters, Posthumous Works, and A Sentimental Journey through France and Italy: “My life had been a tissue of incidents, interwoven by the hand of Fortune, after a whimsical but not distasteful pattern: the ground is light and cheerful, but the flowers are so variegated, that scarce any weaver of fancy will be able to imitate it." Although Dr. Johnson famously dismissed Tristram Shandy as too “odd" to last, Sterne's formally inventive comic narratives had great influence on modern novelists, most notably James Joyce. A near-fine set.