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THE DOOM OF DEVORGOIL, A MELO-DRAMA. [and] AUCHINDRANE; OR THE AYRSHIRE TRAGEDY
Printed by Ballantyne for Cadell and Company, Edinburgh, and Simpkin and Marshall, London, Edinburgh 1830 - A Presentation Copy from Sir Walter Scott. 229 x 152 mm (9 x 6"). 2 p.l., iii, [iii], [9]-337, [1], 4 (ads) pp. First Separate and Complete Edition. Attractive late 19th century dark green armorial morocco by MacLehose of Glasgow (stamp-signed on front turn-in), covers gilt with the heraldic pelican crest of Thomas Glen Arthur of Garrick House, Ayr, flat spine with title at head and author at tail and five gilt ornaments in between (comprised of three thistles and two heraldic devices), gold endleaves, top edge gilt, other edges untrimmed (front hinge and joint with careful repairs, front free endpaper and first flyleaf cut near gutter and reattached with cellotape). A LARGE PAPER PRESENTATION COPY, first preliminary blank with neat ink inscription, "From the Author." Front flyleaf with later pencilled inscription, "To my dear friend / Frank P. Leffingwell / From / Harry A. Sickles / Christmas / 1917." Todd and Bowden 239A. Short crack beginning at bottom of front joint, a hint of fading and leather dressing residue to covers, otherwise in excellent condition, the binding solid and lustrous, the text clean and fresh, and the margins very commodious. A thoroughly Scottish item, this volume was appropriately and attractively bound by a Scottish binder, was once owned by an important Scottish collector, and was a presentation copy from one of the greatest authors Scotland has ever produced. The first English-language author to be recognized internationally in his lifetime, Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832) was, in the words of DNB, "a radical inventor of literary forms," including, especially, the modern historical novel. Our two pieces are short works of poetic drama that involve homicide, ghosts, goblins, and fairies. Originally intended for presentation on the stage, they were deemed unsuitable as dramatic vehicles and ended up being published as extracts in periodical publications. Our 1830 printing is the first complete and separate form of the text, which Scott revised in anticipation of this edition. James MacLehose (1811-85) began his career in 1838 as a Glasgow bookseller, at first in partnership, and then on his own. In 1862 a bindery was added to the enterprise, and in 1881 he brought into the business his two sons, who continued it after his death. The MacLehose workshop produced high quality bindings, and catered in particular to book collectors. The man who commissioned this binding, Thomas Glen Arthur (1858-1907) of Garrick House, Ayr, was a successful clothing merchant and textile manufacturer in Glasgow. He was an avid collector of books, of Dutch and Barbizon paintings, and of fine prints (particularly by Whistler). In 1888, he married the eldest daughter of Sir James Coats, Baronet of Auchendrane in Ayrshire ("Auchindrane" in the title is a variant spelling). In an amusing coincidence, the murderous John Mure of Auchendrane in the second work here is an Ayrshire baron. In light of Walter Scott's immense popularity, it seems strange to note that presentation copies--in his hand or (as here) in the hand of a publisher or secretary--are quite uncommon. [Attributes: Hard Cover]
      [Bookseller: Phillip J. Pirages Rare Books (ABAA)]
Last Found On: 2015-10-11           Check availability:      AbeBooks    

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