Fingal, An Ancient Epic Poem

Ossian's poems, second edition translated from the Gaelic by James MacPherson


Ossian, translated by James MacPherson


T Becket & P A De Hondt, London, 1762
Fingal, An Ancient Epic PoemFingal, An Ancient Epic PoemFingal, An Ancient Epic Poem

Printing Details

Second edition, full leather (spine rebacked, original boards). Engraved vignette to title page, and with five raised bands and gilt decoration to spine. 26.5 × 21cm, [12] xvi, 270pp.

Full title: Fingal, an Epic Poem, in Six Books: Together with several other Poems, composed by Ossian the son of Fingal. Translated from the Galic Language by James MacPherson.

Not signed as such but this copy belonged to Samuel Wegg and has his bookplate to front pastedown. Wegg (1723–1802) was an early governor of the Hudson Bay Company (1782–1799).

This book contains Ossian's Fingal, as well as Comala, The War of Caros, The War of Inis-Thona, The Battle of Lora, Conlath and Cuthona, Carthon, The Death of Cuchullin, Darthula, Temora, Carric-Thura, The Song of Selma, Calthon and Colmal, Lathmon, Oithona, Croma, and Berrathon.

Ossian was a legendary Gaelic warrior who lived about the end of the third century. James MacPherson ascribed the authorship of these poems to Ossian on the early 1760s, and clamied that he had translated them from manuscripts collected in the Scottish Highlands. There was a great deal of controversy concerning their authorship and it is now generally agreed that James MacPherson was the principal author.


A good copy. The leather is in good shape but bumped to the corners. As mentioned above, the spine has been sympathetically rebacked with new leather. The endpapers and prelims are foxed and tanned to the margins, and there is infrequent foxing throughout. The pages are clean but tanned in places. The inner binding is secure.

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