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Life on the Mississippi (first state)
Boston: James R. Osgood, 1883. First Edition. Hardcover Hardcover. Near Fine. 624 pages. Twain's memoir of his days on the Mississippi River before the Civil War--the experience that inspired his greatest novel, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. First edition, first state, with the tailpiece of Twain in flames on page 441 and the illustration on page 443 is incorrectly captioned 'The Saint Louis Hotel.' According to Meryl Johnson's 1910 Twain bibliography, 'The first copies contained a plate, page 441, showing Mark Twain in flames which was omitted at the request of Mrs Clemens in further printings of same title page date.' One early commentator described the tailpiece (an engraving at the end of a chapter) thus: 'The scene is in a cemetery. In the foreground is an urn marked MT supposed to contain the ashes of the author. In the background is a likeness of Mark Twain standing with his arms extended upward, as if in appeal to Father Abraham while his body is enveloped in the flames of hell.' Looking at it that way, the wife of your humble cataloger might well object, too. First edition, first printing, first state. A very attractive copy, a bit frayed at the spine ends and slightly dulled at the spine (only evident because the gilt on the front cover is so bright. Light wear to cover edges; previous owner's name dated 1911; and early catalog description affixed to inside front cover.
      [Bookseller: Eureka Books, ABAA]
Last Found On: 2014-08-08           Check availability:      IOBABooks    

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