An Enquiry Into The Causes Of The Late Increase Of Robbers, &c. With Some Proposals For Remedying This Growing Evil. In Which The Present Reigning Vices Are Impartially Exposed; And The Laws That Relate To The Provision For The Poor, And To The Punishment Of Felons Are Largely And Freely Examined.

FIELDING, HENRY [1707-1754]..

Bound in original full calf gilt, spine in compartments with raised bands and gilt lettering upper board hinges cracked bout sound, with the heraldic crest of the Dukes of Bedford on the boards and with a small shelf number ticket from Woburn Abbey on the front paste-down endpaper.

£950.00

Publisher

printed for A. Millar, opposite to Katharine-Street, in the Strand.,

Place

London:

Date

1751

Item Description

8vo., 8 X 4.5 Inches pp. xv + 127 + [1].

Notes

While principle judge at Bow Street Police Court, Henry Fielding formed a group of "thief-takers" which laid the foundations for the Metropolitan Police force – also known during his time as the "Bow Street runners". Having focused on the working classes in his analysis of the Commonwealth, Fielding urged parliament to address the issues leading to street gangs and highwaymen. He proposed reforms to the "expensive Diversions" that he believed exacerbated criminal activity, such as gaming houses and gin shops. The enduring impact of Fielding's work was evident in criminal legislation introduced in 1751-2. Overlooking the upper classes in his inquiries, he was of the view that those with luxury were above the law, erroneously noting instead the correlation between low income and joblessness with criminal behaviour. These themes and areas of concern were also evident in "Amelia" his final novel published in December 1751. This remains his most influential piece of political economy.

There were two editions of this work both dated 1751. This is the first of the two issues with 127pp instead of 203pp.

[Stock No. 25253]

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