London: Longmans, Green, Reader, and Dyer, 1869. First edition. Mill's final great political and philosophical tract, iterating his support for women's rights. Mill regarded the status of women in society as not only harmful for women themselves but for society in general, limiting the contribution of half the human race hindering human development in general. "The object of this Essay is to explain as clearly as I am able, the grounds of an opinion which I have held from the very earliest period when I had formed any opinions at all on social or political matter, and which, instead of being weakened or modified, has been constantly growing stronger by the progress of reflection and the experience of life: That the principle which regulates the existing social relations between the two sexes-the legal subordination of one sex to the other-is wrong in itself, and now one of the chief hindrances to human improvement; and that it ought to be replaced by a principle of perfect equality, admitting no power or privilege on the one side, nor disability on the other" (p. 1). Mill credited his wife Harriet Taylor Mill with co-writing the essay, and it has been noted that some of the arguments are similar to Taylor Mill's essay, published 18 years earlier, "The Enfranchisement of Women".
8vo, (4) 188pp, uncut. Original publishers' mustard yellow cloth titled in gilt on the spine, blind stamped border on boards, with the brown coated endpapers. Small contemporary blind, private library stamp on the half title page for "Bib Col Mel IHS". Boards clean and bright, spine uniformly darkened. Lower front corners very lightly rubbed otherwise a very lovely copy. Binders ticket for Edmonds & Remnants, London inside back cover. (PMM 345 & 398.)
A very pleasant copy of this landmark work, one of the foundation stones of the early women's rights movement. Item #26697