JAMES, Joseph, printer
Proposals for printing by Subscription, on fine royal paper, in octavo, with a new and elegant letter, cast on purpose by Caslon, a New Work, entitled A Dictionary of the Arts; comprehending all that is useful both in the liberal and mechanical arts ...
Philadelphia: [Joseph James], June 27th, 1789. 2pp. handbill. Loss to final line at bottom on both recto and verso.
An unrecorded prospectus for a never published American dictionary of the arts.
In April 1789, Philadelphia printer Thomas Dobson began taking subscriptions for his first American edition of the Encyclopedia Brittanica. Evidently seeing an opportunity for a competing work, without the science content, Philadelphia printer Joseph James issued the present unrecorded prospectus for an illustrated Dictionary of the Arts. The Prospectus includes lengthy text explaining the reasons for the work and its plan and costs of publication, including a deluxe issue on papier velin. He evidently did not receive the 600 subscriptions required, and abandoned the work.