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M. Valentin. New York: Burgess, Stringer and Company, 1846. First U.S. edition. Two volumes in one, as issued, freshly re-bound in three-quarter leather over marbled boards. This famous tale of revenge and retribution, of which the publisher said "his African blood is warm, and in his pages we accordingly discover the glowings of a heart gushing with feeling....," was inspired by Dumas' own Haitian-born father, an enslaved black man. Two editions were published in the U.S. in 1846; the other being in Boston. Though no known priority has been established, the bibliographies available to us (F.W. Reed, London: 1933 and Douglas Munro, New York: 1978) list only this one and we therefore believe it to be the first. Further, Reed's bibliography states an American reprint was issued the same year as the Burgess, Stringer edition, "but with plates so badly printed as to be almost caricatures of the original." Both the New York and Boston editions are based on the Chapman & Hall, London edition of the same year and include 12 of the 20 M. Valentin illustrations, as called for. [Rusty Mott of the bookselling firm Howard S. Mott, Inc., kindly pointed us to an 1847 ad in Marguerite Blessington's MARMADUKE HERBERT for this book; the ad states, "The work is published in one large Volume, likewise in two Volumes:--in either form it is sold at One Dollar, accompanied by Twelve splendid engravings"]. The Boston edition has appeared twice at auction (in 1940 & 1997). There are NO AUCTION OR SALE RECORDS of this New York edition and only a handful of copies in libraries worldwide making it AN ACTUAL RARE BOOK. Pages a little age-darkened and light foxing or staining, primarily to margins, throughout. Still textually good to very good with the binding being quite fine. A TRULY RARE BOOK.
Item #53637       Price: $7,500.00   Ask a Question
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