This book, purportedly by 'An Old Boy', but in fact by Thomas Hughes (author of 'Tom Brown's Schooldays'), continues the theme of the education of the young Victorian male, in a collection of chapters such as 'Of Unselfishness', 'Of Courtesy and Gentlehood', 'Of Generosity and Thrift', and is written in a typically Victorian 'paterfamilias' tone - now totally outdated, and possibly a cause of amazement (and amusement) to the modern reader. The ideas and themes, however, remain valid and universally applicable even today.
Thomas Hughes (1822-1896) was an English lawyer, judge, politician and author, best known for 'Tom Brown's Schooldays', but also had numerous other interests, in particular as a Member of Parliament, in the British co-operative movement, and in a settlement in Tennessee which reflected his liberal values.
The book is in good condition for its age, bound in olive-green cloth with bevelled edges and the title in gilt letters on the front and spine. The front cover is also adorned with a square gilt panel with flower motif in the bottom R/H corner. Within, the decorated endpapers are somewhat faded and a little torn at the hinges, and the binding is a little weak in a couple of places, but there are no loose pages, and in general the text is clean and bright. Chapters are headed with b/w design panels, begin with illuminated initial letters and are completed by small b/w motifs (see photo no. 8). All page edges are grimy with age, and are roughcut (apart from the top). There is some shelf wear to top & bottom of the spine, and all corners are somewhat bumped. There are brown stains on the halftitle page, and on the reverse of the front free endpaper, and an ink-written signature on the half-title page is dated 1888.