A Proposal For Correcting, Improving and Ascertaining The English Tongue; In A Letter To The Most Honourable Robert Lord Of Oxford and Mortimer, Lord High Treasurer Of Great Britain. Jonathan Swift.

A Proposal For Correcting, Improving and Ascertaining The English Tongue; In A Letter To The Most Honourable Robert Lord Of Oxford and Mortimer, Lord High Treasurer Of Great Britain

London: Benj. Tooke, 1712. First edition. Hardcover. 48 pages [*4,B-F4]. Swift wanted the language to be controlled by a select group of grammarians – and thus to achieve fixity. This would have the important consequence that older books in the language would always remain intelligible. “I would have our language, after it is duly correct, always to last; I do not mean that it should never be enlarged: Provided that no Word which a Society shall give a sanction to, be afterwards antiquated and exploded, they may have liberty to receive whatever new ones they shall find occasion for: Because then the old Books will be always valuable, according to their intrinsick Worth, and not thrown aside on account of unintelligible Words and Phrases.'' This was one of very few publications to which Swift attached his name. With half title, modest toning, F4 with slight .75 cm. margin dampstain, and loss of numeral 4 of page number 48, but no text loss. Endpapers renewed. Modern full brown leather, front cover lettered in gilt. Near fine. Item #21362

Price: $2,500.00

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