Third edition of The Works of Ossian, The Son of Fingal, as translated by James Macpherson.
Octavo, [two volumes], xxiv, 375pp, , [2pp ads]; xlii, , 460pp, [4pp ads]. Full leather, title in gilt on spines. Rebacked with new spines, original marbled endpapers saved. Stated “Third Edition” on title page. Both volumes lacking half-title. Solid text blocks, covers with small cracks and chips, decorative gilt board edges rubbed. Dampstain to top corner of Volume I. Previous ownership bookplates belonging to W. Cotton Risley and Edward Seeber affixed to front endpapers. A beautiful example of both volumes, rarely seen together.
James Macpherson claimed to have found these poems in the Scottish Highlands and translated them from the original Scottish Gaelic. This claim was doubted by scholars, including Dr. Samuel Johnson, resulting in a literary scandal at the time. Macpherson never did produce the original poems.