KORAIS, Adamantios [translator and editor]. ISOCRATES. Logoi kai Epistolai, Meta Skolion Palaion. Paris, Firmin Didot, .
Two volumes. 8vo. Original publisher's polished calf with richly decorated spines, contrasting lettering-pieces, covers inside and outside with ornamental borders, all fore-edges gilt over red, marbled endpapers; pp. 102 (in Greek letters), 448; 60 (Greek letters), 389, fine engraved portrait frontispiece with tissue guard in volume one; spines worn (continuous dusting of bookshelves), but holding firm, occasional spotting or browning internally; late 19th-century Italian collector's stamp to front fly-leaves; a very good set, complete with the series titles, and with gilt edges still sticking together (can easily be separated), i.e. unread.
First edition of the first two volumes of this highly important series, Ellenikes Bibliotekes, of classical Greek texts edited by the scholar Adamantios Korais (1748-1833). This is the complete Isocrates with which Korais began the series which ran apparently up to 1826. These volumes are celebrated not only for their erudition and philological diligence but also for their role within the Greek Enlightenment. Korais wanted to show a cultural continuity from ancient to modern Greece and interest the European public in the philhellenic movement. Of particular importance are his prefaces, introductions and notes in modern Greek (over 160 pages). Adamantios Korais was the leading writer, activist, translator, and publicist of the Greek enlightenment and the movement towards an independent modern Greek state and society. The printer and publisher Firmin Didot spent his youth studying the classics with Korais. The latter encouraged Didot to travel to the Levant to see Greece and improve his Greek. So he visited Greece and Asia Minor and spent time in Kidonies, one of the centers of Greek studies in Anatolia. Didot was among the most important philhellenes and later raised funds for the Greek revolution. - We have seen another set in exactly the same binding, so that we can assume that a number of copies were put into these lavish publisher's bindings.
COPAC locates a single set, at Senate House in London.