"These are the times that try men's souls": Thomas Paine's The American Crisis, by the Author of Common Sense
The American Crisis, by the Author of Common Sense.
Item Number: 93776
Fishkill, NY: 1776.
Exceptionally rare printing of Paine’s famous call to arms was first published in the Philadelphia Journal on 19 December 1776, and then appeared in pamphlet form four days later, soon circulating through the major cities. It begins with the immortal words “These are the times that try men’s souls: The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of his country; but he that stands it NOW, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered, yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly.” This edition is dated “December 23, 1776” in type at the foot of the final page. It was advertised in printer Samuel Loudon’s newspaper, the New-York Packet, on 6 February 1777 as “just published,” and a thousand copies were ordered by the New York Constitutional Convention then in progress. Loudon had been a ship’s chandler before launching his newspaper in January 1775. He fled the British army to Fishkill (in what is now Beacon) in mid-1776 and served as official state printer in addition to other projects. The printer had fled NYC from the British and was also serving as the official printer of the NY government in exile up in Dutchess County. This copy was owned by Jonathan Thompson (1773-1846) of Islip, NY, who inscribed it in 1819. He later went on to be the customs collector for the Port of New York. “A Pair of Peripatetic Printers: The Up-State Imprints of John Holt and Samuel Loudon,” in Essays Honoring Lawrence C. Wroth, page 397; Bristol B4323. 3 copies in ESTC. Octavo, original wrappers with the front panel with light dampstaining. Housed in a custom half clamshell calf and chemise box.
The first Crisis is a vitally important rallying cry to the dispirited American soldiers, opening with the stirring words: "These are the times that try men's souls." The first Crisis was read in fact, at General Washington's orders, to the American troops on Christmas Day 1776, before the crossing of the Delaware and the Battle of Trenton. In January Paine wrote the second Crisis as an open letter to Lord Richard Viscount Howe, the head of the British fleet Paine watched sail up New York Bay, endeavoring "to show the impossibility of the enemy making any conquest of America."
Other Books by this Author
“Independence is my happiness, and I view things as they are, without regard to place or person; my country is the world, and my religion is to do good": First Edition of Thomas Paine's The Rights of Man
London, Printed: New-York: reprinted for Berry, Rogers, and Berry, no. 35, Hanover-Square, 1792.
First edition of Paine’s Rights of Man. Octavo, contemporary brown calf. In good condition with some rubbing and wear.
Rare collection of the works of Thomas Paine; finely bound with a rare early printing of John Quincy Adams' response to Paine's Rights of Man
Common Sense: Addressed to the Inhabitants of America, Plain Truth, Rights of Man Parts I & II, and An Answer to Pain’s Rights of Man.
J. Almon, J.S. Jordan, and J. Stockdale: London, 1776-1793.
Finely bound collection of the works of Thomas Paine, including the rare first British editions of Common Sense and Plain Truth (London: J. Almon, 1776), second editions of Rights of Man Parts I & II (London: J.S. Jordan, 1791-1792), complete with half-titles present, and a rare early printing of John Quincy Adams’ response to Paine’s Rights of Man (London: J. Stockdale, 1793), attributed to his father John Adams and written when John Quincy Adams was 26 years old. Octavo, bound in three quarters morocco over marbled boards with gilt titles and tooling to the spine, red morocco spine label, all edges speckled black. In near fine condition. A rare and desirable collection.
Writings of Thomas Paine: Secretary for Foreign Affairs to the Congress of the United States of America, in the Late War.
Albany, New York: Charles R. & George Webster, 1792.
Nine of Paine’s writings gathered, each pagination with a separate title page. Octavo, bound in contemporary calf. One of at least four issues with variant title pages for this work, this apparently the first, without the addition of “Rights of Man, Part the Second. In very good condition with some light foxing. Rare and desirable.
“THESE ARE THE TIMES THAT TRY MEN’S SOULS”: Finely Bound Set of the Life and Writings of Thomas Paine
New York: Vincent Parke, 1908.
Limited edition, number 15 of 500, signed on the limitation page by the editor, Daniel Edwin Wheeler of the works of Thomas Paine. Octavo, 10 volumes, bound in full morocco, covers and spine decorated in floral motifs in gilt with green and bright red inlays, gilt-ruled dentelles, inside covers inlaid with lily designs in green and white on a grey ground, silk endleaves. In fine condition. An exceptional set, most rare and desirable in full morocco.
“Independence is my happiness, and I view things as they are, without regard to place or person; my country is the world, and my religion is to do good": Finely bound collection of the major works of Thomas Paine
Paine’s Works: The Rights of Man Parts I & II, Common Sense, and Letters Addressed to the Addressers of the Late Proclamation.
London: Printed for H.D. Symonds, 1792.
Finely bound collection of the major works of Thomas Paine including The Rights of Man Parts I & II, Common Sense, and Letters Addressed to the Addressers of the Late Proclamation. Octavo, bound in full contemporary sheep with gilt tooling and morocco spine label lettered in gilt to the spine, each pagination with a separate title page. Additionally included at rear is Two Letters to Mr. Henry Dundas published by Paine, Dundas, and Onslow, London 1792. In very good condition.
London: J. S. Jordan, Fleet Street; J. Ridgway, York Street; H.D Symonds, Paternoster Row, 1795-1792.
Attractively bound early set including founding father Thomas Paine’s best-known and most influential works. Titles include in full: Rights of Man: Being An Answer To Mr. Burke’s Attack on the French Revolution, Part I (1795); Rights of Man; Part The Second Combining Principle and Practice (1792); Common Sense Addressed to the Inhabitants of America (1792); Letter Addressed to the Addressers on the Late Proclamation (1792). Octavo, five volumes, uniformly bound by early Boston binder J. Loring in contemporary calf, gilt titles and tooling to the spine, red morocco spine labels, engraved frontispiece portrait of Paine. In very good condition with some light toning to the text. An attractive and desirable collection.
Droits de L’Homme; En Reponse a L’Attaque de M. Burke Sur La Revolution Francois. [Rights of Man: Part the First Being An Answer to Mr. Burke’s Attach on the French Revolution].
Chez F. Buisson: Paris, 1791.
First French edition of Thomas Paine’s classic statement of faith in democracy and egalitarianism. Octavo, bound in contemporary one quarter calf over marbled boards. In very good condition. From the library of Virginia bibliophile and historian Christopher Clark Geest with his bookplate to the pastedown. Rare and desirable.
"Like all Israelis, I yearn for peace. I see the utmost importance in taking all possible steps that will lead to a solution of the conflict with the Palestinians": First Edition of Warrior: An Autobiography; Inscribed by Ariel Sharon
New York: Simon & Schuster, 1989.
First edition of Sharon’s autobiography. Octavo, original half cloth, illustrated. Inscribed and dated by Ariel Sharon on the half-title page. Laid in a lecture announcement by Sharon. Near fine in a fine dust jacket. Jacket design by Lawrence Ratzkin.
Nobel Prize-Winning Economist Amartya Sen's Copy of On Economic Theory and Capitalism; With his Signature and Inscribed to Him
Oxford: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1955.
First edition. Octavo, original cloth. Nobel Prize-winning economist Amartya Sen’s copy with his name “A.K. Sen Trinity College Cambridge” on the half title page. Inscribed on the front free endpaper to Sen, “For Amartiya With the confidence that he will plan the dynamic economy, of a socialist and peaceful India. With best wishes, Arif Cambridge 8 May 1955.” In very good condition.
Signed Limited Edition, number 2223. Large folio, original full brown morocco gilt, watered silk endpapers, top edge gilt. Signed by Franklin D. Roosevelt. Gordon Browning’s copy with his name embossed on the front panel. Browning was an American politician who served as Governor of Tennessee from 1937 to 1939, and again from 1949 to 1953. He also served six terms in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1923 to 1935 and served on the staff of General Dwight D. Eisenhower. In very good condition.
"I have walked that long road to freedom. I have tried not to falter; I have made missteps along the way. But I have discovered the secret that after climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb" First Edition of The Illustrated Long Walk To Freedom; Signed and dated by Nelson Mandela
Boston: Little Brown, 1995.
First American edition of the illustrated autobiography of one of the greatest moral leaders of the twentieth century. Quarto, original boards. Signed and dated by Nelson Mandela on the title page. Fine in a near fine dust jacket.