London: Burns Oates & Washbourne, Ltd, 1932. Fourth edition. Thick octavo (8 3/4 inches tall), original beveled gilt black cloth, red top edge. Bookplate. Housed in a custom black cloth slipcase. Penciled initials (dated 1934), faint tanning to blank flyleaves, gilt bright, corners sharp, small puckered spot to upper front board, spine gently toned. A near-fine copy. Item #655
"'GUIDE, PHILOSOPHER AND FRIEND' OF THE CLERIC IN MATTERS CEREMONIAL THROUGHOUT THE ENGLISH-SPEAKING WORLD" Early edition of this classic liturgical text, printed on laid paper with a handsome red-ruled title page, in the original binding. First prepared in 1917 by Adrian Fortescue, "the greatest authority on the liturgy of the Roman Rite the English-speaking world has ever known" (Michael Davies). After Fortescue died in 1923 (at age 49), Canon J.B. O`Connell oversaw the preparation of the third edition ("revised and augmented") of 1930. This fourth edition includes O'Connell's Foreword of the Reviser to the Third Edition (and a brief Note to the Fourth Edition, dated "February, 1932"). O'Connell acknowledges the need for a revision of such a complex text: "much water has flown under the bridge in the twelve years that have elapsed since the book was first published."
The text consists of five sections, generously illustrated throughout with 48 plans: Part I. General Principles Concerning Ceremonies, Part II. The Holy Sacrifice, Part III. Evening Services, Part IV. The Liturgical Year, Part V. Occasional Functions. This edition reprints the brief original Preface by Cardinal Bourne (dated, "September 1917") and Adrian Fortescue's lengthy original Author's Preface (dated, "Letchworth, All Hallows, 1917") together with his brief postscript to the second edition (dated, "Letchworth, Michaelmas, 1918"). The book grew out of Fortescue's attempts to revise the 1839 Dale translation of Baldeschi's ceremonial. After growing frustrated at adapting Dale-Baldeschi for use in England, Fortescue decided to start anew, with the hope that "this book aims at providing what a priest in England may want. That is its ideal—a church in England served by secular priests." The preliminaries also include Fortescue's valuable bibliographical Note on the Books Consulted. A handsome copy of a comprehensive edition of this liturgical classic. Approbations.