(Philadelphia: Lea and Blanchard, 1840). 180 x 110 mm. (7 x 4 1/8"). Two volumes. FIRST EDITION, First Issue (with imprints of Fagan and Collins at center of p. [2]; no copyright notice).

Attractive late 19th century scarlet crushed morocco, gilt, covers with gilt-rule frame accentuated with bow-arrow-tomahawk tool at corners, raised bands, spines gilt in compartments with bow tool or crossed rifles at center, foliate spray at corners, gilt titling, turn-ins with frame of plain and dotted rules, foliate tool at corners, leather hinges, emerald green watered silk endleaves, all edges gilt. BAL 3892. A little soiling to edges of boards, joints and corners lightly rubbed, one rear board with patch of white residue (from leather preservative?), occasional mild foxing, otherwise an excellent copy, clean and fresh internally, in a well-preserved binding.

This is an attractively bound first printing of the further adventures of Natty Bumppo, the hero of "Last of the Mohicans." The first American writer to gain widespread international recognition, Cooper (1789-1851) is the only author who can justly be compared to Scott in the field of the romantic novel. Although they are chiefly thought of as vehicles for romanticizing the American frontier, Cooper's works are serious explorations of the theme of a "search for enduring moral values amidst incessant change." The present major work is the fourth of Cooper's five famous Leather-stocking novels, all featuring the mythic wilderness hunter Bumppo, "the prototype of a recurrent figure in American fiction: the free, noble, solitary American who denies a safe and conforming life in order to maintain dignity, self-possession, and the natural inner discipline of true democracy." (Day) In this work, Bumppo saves Mabel Dunham, the daughter of an army sergeant at a frontier fort, from the ravages of nature and of lustful men, but when he is encouraged by the sergeant to marry Mabel, he predictably slips away into the wilderness. The aptly decorated binding is unsigned, but is similar to the work done by English emigré binders who came to the U.S. in repsonse to the binding demands of the great book collectors of the Gilded Age.

Add to Cart Price: $1,900.00

PJP Catalog: NY19BF.071


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