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(Rutter, John)

History of the Shaftesbury election of 1830, containing a complete and correct account of the extraordinary contest for the liberty and independence of that borough. To which is prefixed a supplement, containing an account of the subsequent proceedings. By a constitutional reformer.

Shaftesbury, printed by George Adams (and London, Effingham Wilson) (1830).

Reference: 9040
Price: £195 [convert currency]

Full Description

8vo. xvi + 170 + (2) + 20 + 26 + (2)pp. Original printed wrappers, abraded at outer margins and neatly rebacked.

We list this item here not because it has anything to do with art or architecture, but because it reveals its author, John Rutter, best known for his handsome book on William Beckford’s Fonthill Abbey, in his parallel role as a radical agitator, pursuing a vigorous campaign against Earl Grosvenor (subsequently 1st Marquis of Westminster) who had then recently purchased a landed estate which gave him political control of the borough of Shaftesbury. Rutter provides a blow-by-blow account of the election campaign in Shaftesbury at the general election of 1830, documenting the activities of Lord Grosvenor’s agents in successfully coercing the local electorate into voting for the Grosvenor candidates, and it is clear that at a local level radicals such as Rutter were unimpressed by the fact that Lord Grosvenor was a Whig, not a Tory, and was a supporter both of Catholic Emancipation and of parliamentary reform. Although the principal part of the volume (as far as p.170) was, as indicated on the title leaf, printed by George Adams, the twenty pages that follow were printed by Rutter himself, as was the twenty-six page pamphlet with which the volume concludes (this is not by Rutter but by “A Student of Lincoln’s Inn”, and is described on its title leaf as “A rejoinder to “An Elector” on his “Plain Observations” on Mr.Knowles’s address to the electors of Shaftesbury”).