A Collection of Novels and Tales of the Fairies. Written by that Celebrated Wit of France, the Countess d’Anois. In three volumes. Vol. I [-III]. The Fifth Edition. Translated from the best Edition of the Original French, by several Hands. London, J. Brotherton [&c.], 1766.
Fifth Edition. Three volumes, 12mo, (162 x 92 mm), pp. ix, [iii] advertisements, 288; [ii], -275,  advertisements; [ii], -239,  advertisements, marginal damp-staining in the second and third volumes, in contemporary tree calf, triple gilt filet to covers with corner floral tooling, joints rubbed but sound, spines elaborately gilt in compartments with red and black labels lettered and numbered in gilt, with the later pencil ownership inscription of W.K. Leslie.
An attractive copy of a scarce English edition of the complete fairy tales by Madame d’Aulnoy. First published in 1697 as Contes des Fées, with another volume appearing in 1698 under the title Les Contes nouveau, she wrote some thirty stories in all, some of which, like ‘L’Oiseau bleu’ and ‘Le Chatte blanche’ have become classics. Numerous editions of her works have been published since with varying degrees of completeness. All eighteenth century editions in French and English (as of course the original late seventeenth century French editions) are now pretty scarce and as they were well read, they are seldom found in good condition. Despite a few minor scuffs, this is a handsome copy in contemporary tree calf.
'Comment concilier l'aventureuse existence de cette virago sans scrupules', asks René Herval, 'avec le délicieux talent de l'auteur des Contes de Fées … car il est indéniable que le même esprit qui médita la perte du baron d'Aulnoy a créé une oeuvre qui l'emporte même sur celle de Perrault' (qv. Dictionnaire des Lettres Françaises XVII, pp. 86-87).
There were a number of early editions of the English text of Aulnoy’s Contes des fées, which was first published in English in 1721 (ESTC lists NLW, Bodleian, Harvard, Miami and Clark). Editions followed in 1722 (Bodleian, Penn); 1728 (BL, Worcester Oxford, Newberry, Illinois, Michigan, Penn, Yale and National Library of Australia); 1737 (Edinburgh University, NLW, Harvard and New York University); 1749 (Cleveland Public, Harvard, Princeton, Stanford, UCLA and Clark); 1749 (Princeton, Alberta, UCLA).
ESTC t82647, at BL, Cambridge, Louisiana State, Newberry and UCLA only.