Full Inquiry into the Subject of Suicide. To Which are Added (as Being Closely Connected with the Subject) Two Treatises on Duelling and Gaming. In two volumes. By Charles Moore, M. A. Rector of Cuxton and Vicar of Boughton-Blean, Kent; and Formerly Fellow of Trinity-College, Cambridge.
London: J. F. and C. Rivington,...[et al.], 1790.
First edition. 1 vols. 4to. Bound in modern quarter leather, retaining both title pages and subscriber lists. Occasional minor spotting; very good ESTC T111258; Fedden, Suicide: a social and historical study, p. 348; Hunter & MacAlpine pp. 528-31. Item #314880
The most significant work on suicide of the eighteenth century.
Together with dueling, the author devotes a separate treatise to suicide’s relationship to gambling. A “most frequent source of suicide,” writes the author, gambling is “often the last stage and completion of a vicious character.” The second chapter of the treatise deals with the universality of gambling, with histories of play in China, Sumatra, North America, Africa, and ancient civilizations.
The substantial "Treatise on gaming" at the end of vol. II discusses the vices of gambling, covering dice, cards, "the pursuits of the turf," lotteries, and stock-jobbing, all "notoriously productive of either direct or indirect self-murder." Among those in the lengthy "List of Subscribers" in volume one and an additional one in volume 2 are the Archbishop of Canterbury, William Heberden (who attended the melancholic Samuel Johnson and was called in to advise in the case of George III's indisposition), William Hawes of the Humane Society, and Samuel Whitbread, reformist MP who, ironically, committed suicide himself in 1815.
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