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Sterne, Laurence (1713-1768)
The life and opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gent.
Dublin : Thomas Armitage, 1779.

Image from Sterne's Tristram Shandy

Originally published in nine short volumes from 1759-66 Tristram Shandy is a comic novel that was enormously popular during Sterne's lifetime. Such are the digressions into Tristram Shandy's eccentric family that the main character does not appear until the fourth volume. Yet this is all part of the humour of a story that takes longer to tell than the life does to live! The plates are by William Hogarth and in order to protect the work from piracy Sterne personally signed over 12,000 of the volumes.

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