Title A Vindication of Some Passages in the Fifteenth and Sixteenth Chapters of The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.
Publisher Dublin. Printed for W. and H. Whitestone, J. Williams, W. Colles.... 1779
Seller ID 7799
First Irish edition. 158pp. Bound in contemporary tree calf, rebacked in modern calf with original lettering piece laid down. Some v. occ. light foxing o/w a clean and sound volume. Very scarce. Norton 32. A reprint of the first London edition with the corrections made. Gibbon, unlike many writers, did read the criticisms of his works. Copies of many of the attacks on 'The History of the Decline and Fall...' were found in his library when he died. It was an attack by one of the least worthy of his critcs that lead Gibbon to write 'A Vindication'. Davis of Oxford was only twenty-one but it was he who questioned Gibbon's honesty and reliability as an historian. Gibbon felt this was a criminal accusation. "Mr. Davies (sic) of Oxford presumed to attack, not the faith, but the good faith of the historian". 'A Vindication...' was priced at 2s 6d and sold out within a few weeks. While it failed to silence his opponents, it was very well received generally.
PHILOSOPHY, POLITICS and SOCIETY 18th century Gibbon