A Poetical Descant on the Primeval and Present State of Mankind; or, The Pilgrim's Muse. Slavery, Joseph Thomas, American Poetry.

A Poetical Descant on the Primeval and Present State of Mankind; or, The Pilgrim's Muse.

Winchester, Va. J. Foster, Printer, 1816. First edition. Small 8vo, original sheep, red leather label, gilt lettering, 219, [1] pages. Fragile sheep rubbed but sound; some light foxing and spotting; front joint just a trifle tender; a good, sound copy of a moderately crude American book. Item #19598

An eccentric book-length poem from Elder Joseph Thomas (1791-1835), the wide-ranging charismatic North Carolina itinerant preacher known as the White Pilgrim for his habit of attiring himself in white apparel in all seasons and climes. Thomas includes a fairly lengthy and graphic section here leveled against slavery and its e, suggesting those who endorse slavery might "Let them be bound and torn away, / From wives and friends to Africa. / Let them be starv'd and beat one year, / Then say 'tis right, I'll say 'tis queer; / Or whip their wives before their eye-- / Is that all right? O no they cry." Thomas also suggests abstaining from the product of slave labor, "In sugar works where Negroes toil, / A leg, and arm they often boil; / They grind them up and mix the sweet / Of all that luxury we eat. / O temp'rate man, use not that food, / That's stain'd or mix'd with negro blood! / That taste luxur'ous now forego, / Which causes human gore to flow." Stoddard & Whitesell 1148; Sabin 63639. Early ink autograph ownership signatures to the front free endpaper and to a rear blank and endpapers. Small tear from the lower margin of one leaf, with loss of a few letters but no loss of sense.

Price: $500.00