The Character, Praise and Commendation, of a Chaste and Virtuous Woman: in a Learned and Pious Discourse against Adultery. Adultery, Mordecai Moxon, attributed author, but John Hinde or Robert Bolton?

The Character, Praise and Commendation, of a Chaste and Virtuous Woman: in a Learned and Pious Discourse against Adultery.

London: Printed by Henry Hills, 1708. Second edition, a likely piracy of Moxon's Manchester Daemoniack (1703). Small 8vo, removed pamphlet, 16 pages. A few small worm holes through each of the leaves, with the loss of a few single letters (but no loss of sense); some light browning; a good, sound copy. Item #14755

"We would account it an horrid thing for one to take the *Body of Christ,* and tread it in the dirt under his feet, and tumble it up and down in the Kennel; why, it is much worse to take his *members* and make them the *members* of an *Harlot;* a creature that is made up of Lust and Impudence, and the absence of all Vertue, more diseased in her soul than she is in her body, not only most abominable to vertuous minds, but even to those persons themselves that make use of her, nay I am perswaded at that very time when they are carried headlong with the violent rage of their imperious *lust,* and yet take the *members* of an *Harlot,* why 'tis not possible the Apostle should a higher expression then this. Beloved, we are apt to think that our *members* are our own, that we what we list with them, but *St. Paul* will tell us we are much deceived. . . ." The attribution to Mordecai Moxon, whose name here graces the title page, was originally taken from the dedicatory epistle to the original edition of this pamphlet, published as The Manchester daemoniack, or, the white she devil ejected: in a sermon against adultery, lately preached in the collegiate church, of Christ’s-Colledge in Manchester . . . before the worshipful Mr. R-t D-s woolen draper of the said town, occasioned by his playing at water-wag-taile with the shoemakers wife. By a reverend divine of the Church of England (London, 1703), a lively and moderately scholastic and only mildly salacious treatment--despite the repeated harping on the pseudo-genital *member*--of Matthew 5:28. (That dedicatory epistle is not present in this edition.)The Manchester connection suggests the late 17th century Manchester stationer and sometime bookseller and publisher Mordecai Moxon (see his imprint on the Angler's Vade Mecum, 1681) was the source for the copy of this sermon rather than the "reverend divine" behind the text; a cursory look at Raines' The Fellows of the Collegiate Church of Manchester (Chethem Society, 1891) suggests perhaps John Hinde or Robert Bolton as the possible preachers; the identity of the lightly-disguised culprit R-t D-s with lust in his heart who appears in the that earlier version of the title was likely Robert Delves, a gentleman and woolen draper who died in 1707 and who (happily enough) appears to have been buried in the very church (now the Manchester Cathedral) where the sermon was delivered. (See the second volume of History of the foundations in Manchester of Christ's College, etc., 1830-1834). The happy intersection of scandal and piety suggested by this work is of course the literary meat of Grub Street and Hills, though unhappily the 1703 publication date of the first edition rules out the enterprising Curll. Small early ink autograph nonce volume number at the head of the title.

Price: $225.00