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Codex Seraphinianus + Confronting and Collecting - Luigi Serafini - 1981. 
Franco Maria Ricci, Milan 1981 - 2 Volumes, 36x24cm, [182+186pp]. Copy 2639 of 4000, signed by Serafini to the Volume 2 colophon, printed in black with copious colour illustrations on Fabriano paper, in full black silk with gilt titling and Serafinian text to the front boards, colour images on gloss paper applied to front boards, gilt titling to spine, each volume in a black silk covered drop-back box with decorative pattern black paper to the fronts and backs, white paper title-labels to spines. Single sheet loose insert to Volume 1 'L'editore al lettore' printed double-sided in Italian. (ISBN of Volume 2 is 8821600270) The 'Codex' is Luigi Serafini's masterpiece - a stunning encylopedia of an imaginary world, complete with an invented alphabet. For long a cult book, it has now become famous in the Internet age as 'The World's Weirdest Book'. This is the true signed and numbered two-volume First Edition, published by Franco Maria Ricci within his 'Signs of Man' series (numbers 27 and 28) - the most sought-after, distinctive, beautiful and by far the most expensive version of the book (not to be confused with the first US edition, namely the one-volume Abbeville of 1983 and its European cousins, or the later Franco Maria Ricci one-volume 'facsimile' reprint of 1993). Prior to the Rizzoli 'Deluxe' reprint of 2013, this was the only edition of the book to be signed by Serafini himself. Further details of the Codex and its publishing history are widely available online. Together with the Codex itself, we are very pleased to be able to include the essay 'Confronting and Collecting the work of Luigi Serafini' by Jordan Hurder of Chance Press, California (first published online as 'The Worlds of Luigi Serafini'). In our view this is by far the most intelligent commentary on Serafini and the Codex (at least of those available in English) and helps considerably in illuminating (but not translating of course!) the book. 'Confronting and Collecting' is an elegant limited edition from Chance Press in its own right - this copy out-of-series 'AP2' of a limitation of 25 of the 2010 second edition signed by Hurder, sewn into green wrappers with a vellum dustwrapper. All editions of the Codex Seraphinianus, and other Serafini works, seem to be subject to steadily rising and perhaps over-optimistic prices. We hope to have set a realistic price for this fine copy of the First Edition. Further details and images are available on request. Fine, in Very Good+ drop-back boxes (slightly faded backstrips and very light shelfwear to edges, small card bookplates lightly tipped-in to the inner front corners), 'Confronting and Collecting' also Fine. [Attributes: First Edition; Signed Copy; Hard Cover]
[Bookseller: Woodbridge Rare Books]
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