This illustrated edition of
The New Bath Guide by Christopher Anstey is based on the Second Issue of the First Edition which was published in 1766. It includes two major additions made by the author, the «Epilogue» and «A Charge to the Poets». It aims at widening the perspective on the eighteenth century by examining the work of a minor poet and challenges conventional assumptions about the scope of minor poetry.
This series of satirical letters in verse written by the members of a provincial family staying in Georgian Bath provides an inexhaustible source of fun and has great sociological interest. Thanks to the individual and varied voices which are heard in this epistolary poem, a whole society in the making comes alive through the distorting mirror of satire.
The introduction, notes and appendices throw new light on a once famous and provocative text and make extensive use of little-known material such as significant parts of the author’s correspondence. They situate Anstey’s work in its literary and historical contexts, by locating it at the junction of fiction and documentation, at a time of emergence, when new social codes were defined for a new society.
Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, New York, Oxford, Wien, 2010. 301 pp., 5 ill.
Contents: A brief synopsis of Christopher Anstey’s life and works – Critical perspectives on The New BathGuide:
The nature of the work - The epistolary thread - Satire - Verse and imagery - The aim of the venture – The different editions
of The New Bath Guide: the book’s historiography – Edited text The New Bath Guide (Second Issue of the First
Edition) – Notes to The New Bath Guide.