London: Printed for B. and S. Tooke in Fleeet Street; F. Fayram and J. Clarke at the Royal-Exchange, and T. Bickerton in Pater-Noster Row, 1722. Leather bound. “The Second Edition revis’d and enlarg’ed by the Author.” Approximately 4.75” x 7.75”. Collated and complete: 8 preliminary pages, 284 pages of text, 24-page Table [of Contents], and 4 pages of advertisements plus 15 engraved plates including the frontispiece. Contemporary polished leather binding with five raised bands. Gilt decorations; burgundy spine label with gilt lettering. Very good. Sound binding with cracked, possibly mended, hinges. Clean pages with scattered minor foxing. Owner’s signature (John Weyland) on title page and Thomas Fleming, Jr.’s bookplate inside the front cover. Relatively light wear to cover; most at extremities, joints, and spine ends. Bright gilding. Very good. Item #009088
This edition expands upon the first printing to include Beverley’s promotion of Native American-white intermarriage. (See Howes B410, Sabin 5113, and Streeter 1099.) Howes also notes that Beverley’s history is ‘the first account of this colony, [and after John Smith’s,] the first one penned by a native and the best contemporary record of its aboriginal tribes and of the life of its early settlers" It is generally accepted as one of the best and most accurate accounts of early Virginia life covering “the History of the First Settlement . . . the Government there of, to the Year 1706, . . . The natural Productions and Conveniences . . . suited to Trade, . . . The Native Indians, . . . [and] The Present State of the Country . . . [until] the 10th of June 1720.” The well-done engravings of Native Americans are based upon the original drawings of John White from Theodore De Bry’s Grand Voyages. Beverley, who inherited considerable land in Virginia, began his adult life as a clerk in Jamestown and despite being removed from that office by a political adversary, Lieutenant Governor Francis Nicholson, became a member of the House of Burgesses and the chief clerk of the governor's Council. He traveled to England in 1703 to defend a land acquisition in the General Court. While there, he wrote this history, which he also used to settle his political score against Nicholson, as a self-described Virginian: “‘I am an Indian, and don't pretend to be exact in my language,’ Beverley wrote in the preface. ‘But I hope the Plainness of my Dress, will give [the reader] the kinder Impressions of my Honesty, which is what I pretend to.’. . ". The History was also sharply critical of Nicholson, including the governor's transfer of the capital from Jamestown, where Beverley owned property, to the "imaginary City" of Williamsburg. Before leaving London, Beverley participated in the campaign against the governor that led to Nicholson's recall at about the same time that the History was printed.” (See The Encyclopedia Virginia.) Much nicer than usually found. As of 2018, three other examples are for sale in the trade: one in a later binding, one with amateurish repairs, and one with a detached front board. ABPC and Rare Book Hub show only eight auction sales in the last 100 years. OCLC shows numerous microform and digital copies but only two physical examples of the Tooke edition held by institutions.