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2020-11-12 19:32:21
SMART, Christopher.
Rejoice in the Lamb. A Song from Bedlam. Edited with an Introduction and Notes by William Force Stead.
London: Jonathan Cape, 1939. London: Jonathan Cape,, 1939. Octavo. Original blue cloth, titles gilt to spine, top edge blue, others untrimmed. With the dust jacket. Manuscript facsimile frontispiece. Foxing to edges and to early leaves, less so to some margins further in, but otherwise a very good copy with the dust jacket tanned to spine, ruffled at the ends with a large chip at the tail fore-corner, and somewhat spotted to rear panel. First edition, first printing, number 52 of 800 copies, this with the very scarce dust jacket. This is the first printing of Smart's "Jubilate Agno", written 1759-63 in St Luke's Hospital during his period of insanity. The manuscript lay fallow in a private library for well over a century until it was discovered and edited by W. F. Stead. The visionary, at times almost lysergic, religious poem is now a classic particularly for its "For I will consider my Cat Jeoffry" section, in which Smart writes with great tenderness about his confinement's sole companion. Stead in his introduction observes of the poem "In this strange, chaotic composition... the reader is continually joggled about between laughter, sympathy and wonder" but notes that "the tribute to Jeoffry in particular is a unique and delightful contribution to literature". Smart's biographer Neil Curry goes so far as to say that these 74 lines have immortalised Jeoffry as the "most famous cat in the whole history of English literature" (Christopher Smart, 2005). This copy has the ownership inscription of psychiatrist James Valentine (1906-2007), who in 1939 was appointed the Physician … [Click Below for Full Description]
Bookseller: Peter Harrington [United Kingdom]
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