The Idler was a series of 103 essays, all but twelve of them by Samuel Johnson, published in the London weekly journal "The Universal Chronicle" between 1758 and 1760.
It is likely that the Chronicle was published for the sole purpose of including The Idler, since it had produced only one issue before the series began, and ceased publication when it finished. The authors, besides Johnson, were Thomas Warton, Bennet Langton and Joshua Reynolds.
This is the first volume of two and contains 52 essays. Its title page credits the essays to the author of The Rambler, another series of essays by Johnson.
Bound in brown calf which, although scuffed and worn around the edges, faded overall, is remarkable for its age. The top and base of the spine is bumped, much of the gilt ornamentation is worn away, what remains is quaintly attractive. Text block edges are only moderately toned for a book of 1790, otherwise the book is in very good condition, with clear and legible text, a fine frontispiece (image shown) and occasional decorative borders.