John Adams signed from son President's library Horace French college bookBrian DiMambro- Antiquarian Books, Maps & Prints
(Historical and Educational antiquarian Books, Horace, Ancient poets and writers, Literature, Roman Poetry, 18th Century Books, Thomas B. Adams).
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Q. Horatii Flacci Carmina Expurgata, ed. by Josephus Juvencius.
Published 1757, Paris by Nicolaum Lallemant.
407 pages. Text in English. Excellent well printed scholarly edition, fine typography, dozens of small decorative ornamental woodcut designs throughout.
Likely from the personal college library of and signed in 1786 by John B. Adams, youngest son of John Adams, founding father and second President of the U.S,
Title page bears inscription from the early owner - Thomas B. Adams, 1786. This signature is very likely that of Thomas Boylston Adams, the youngest son of John Adams. Thomas Adams would have been enrolled or about to enroll at Harvard College at the time of the inscription, which clearly indicates a well educated hand.
It thus also seems entirely possible the book may be a direct present from his father, the future President, who like many of the founding fathers was an avid reader and book connoisseur, maintaining scholarly private libraries which virtually always included key works of early Roman writers, such as this one.
Further, the publication history of the book (1757, France) and John Adams' tenure as American ambassador to France, Britain, and the Netherlands (c. 1778-1788) gives us reason to believe that the inscription is highly likely that of John Adams' son. [We're currently searching an authentic T.B. signature for comparison. Please contact us if you know of one].
Further research is required, as this early preliminary description is merely (strong and reasonable) circumstantial speculation on our part.
Book remains well preserved and attractive on the shelf. It displays a pleasing and unique age patina and is in nice antiquarian condition, the physical age flaws easy to overlook or forgive.
Period full French leather binding, raised bands, gilt compartment decoration. Leather now well age dried and scuffed, gilt flaked, joints cracked, spine top chipped, but binding overall remains sound and attractive. Covers well attached, text block square & tight, toned and spotted as often seen in books of this era.
Please review video & photos for more detail and our best attempt to convey how this antique item survives.
Book Measures c. 6 3/4" H x 4" W.