(New York: Nonesuch Press, 1929-33). 242 x 155 mm. (9 1/2 x 6 1/4"). Seven volumes. Edited by Herbert Farjeon. One of 1,600 copies.

Original publisher's russet niger morocco by A. W. Bain, covers with gilt double fillet frame, raised bands, gilt titling on spines, top edges gilded on the rough, other edges untrimmed and PARTIALLY UNOPENED. Dreyfus 58. Three covers with a total of five (oil?) spots (one the size of a quarter, the others smaller), spines sunned as always (but atypically uniform in color), free endpapers with offset shadow from binder's glue, otherwise a very fine copy--the bindings with virtually no wear, and the interiors essentially undisturbed.

Taken from the text of the First Folio, but "with Quarto variants and a selection of modern readings," this version is one of the foremost editions--and perhaps the single best modern edition--of Shakespeare ever printed. It is also the most outstanding production of the Nonesuch Press. Ransom calls it "editorially and typographically . . . the high spot of the Nonesuch program." Besides the authentic plays and poetry of Shakespeare, the set includes (in the final volume) three plays on which Shakespeare is believed to have collaborated: "The Two Noble Kinsmen," "King Edward the Third," and "Sir Thomas More." Their inclusion was motivated by the publisher's desire to be thorough, to do something a bit different, and to make the seventh volume of the same bulk as the previous ones. The press run limitation here is not so restricted that copies are hard to obtain, but most sets show a pronounced difference in the colors of the spines, and the leather has a tendency to get spotted. As the set appears on the shelf, the present copy is among the most attractive we have seen on the market for quite some time, with spines as uniform as one is ever likely to encounter. And it is clear from how stiffly the volumes open and its partially unopened leaves that this set has seen very little use.

Add to Cart Price: $3,600.00

PJP Catalog: XMAS16.043


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