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Leaves of Grass
Thayer and Eldridge Boston:: Thayer and Eldridge,. 1860.. Third edition. Hardcover. Very good condition. This is the scarce first issue of the 1860 third edition of Leaves of Grass, with the tinted frontispiece portrait of Whitman (an engraving by Stephen Alonzo Schoff from an oil painting portrait by Charles Hine), and the printer's name on the verso of the title page ("Electrotyped at the Boston Stereotype Foundry. Printed by George C. Rand & Avery"). It can also be identified as the earliest binding by the orange cloth binding, with heavy embossing in wavy vertical lines and the gilt butterfly on the backstrip (White, William. "Walt Whitman: A Bibliographical Checklist". Walt Whitman Quarterly Review 3 (Summer 1985), 28-43.) The poems are arranged in 7 "clusters": 'Chants Democratic and Native American', with an introductory poem 'Apostroph'; 'Leaves of Grass'; 'Enfans d'Adam'; 'Calamus'; 'Messenger Leaves'; 'Thoughts'; 'Says'; 'Debris'; and 26 individual poems including 'Walt Whitman', 'A Word Out of the Sea' (later titled 'Out of the Cradle Endlessly Rocking'). The volume commences with 'Proto-Leaf', which was later called 'Starting from Paumanok'. According to the Walt Whitman archive, "The significance of the 1860 edition of Leaves of Grass tends to be paradoxical. Although the poems often express grief over romantic and professional failures, the book's new sense of structure, the sizable increase in poems, its wider readership and critical praise made it one of Whitman's most successful books. Although the poems seem more intimate and personal than previous Whitman poems, the third edition is also a deliberate intervention into public life, an attempt to realize American democratic ideals and save the Union." 8vo, iv, 456pp. With three small trimmed early catalog descriptions laid down inside the front cover. Also two bookseller labels: C. E. W. Baldwin, Druggist & Bookseller, Hornellsville, N. Y.; and Shepard Book Company, Salt Lake City, Utah. Terra cotta/orange textured gilt cloth, beveled edges, gilt butterfly at spine. Rubbed at spine ends with quarter inch loss, very small puncture beneath butterfly at backstrip. Internally, lacking rear end paper.
      [Bookseller: Antipodean Books, Maps & Prints ]
Last Found On: 2013-02-03           Check availability:      ABAA    

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