TRILBY.

(London: Osgood, McIlvaine & Co., 1895). 193 x 143 mm. (7 5/8 x 5 5/8"). x, 447, [5] pp. First Edition with These Illustrations.

Handsome modern dark blue morocco by Sangorski & Sutcliffe (stamp-signed in gilt on front turn-in), raised bands, compartments with gilt lettering, decorative gilt rules, and tooling, gilt-ruled turn-ins, top edge gilt. House in light green paper slipcase. With 121 in-text illustrations by the author, many full-page. Slight separation along gutter after preliminary leaves (but the binding entirely sound), a couple of negligible blemishes in the margins, but A BEAUTIFUL COPY in an especially appealing binding.

This is an attractively bound copy of a work that in its day was second in popularity only to Bram Stoker's "Dracula." Set in bohemian Paris in the middle of the 19th century, the novel's title character is a tone-deaf Irish artist's model and laundress who becomes a world-class singer whenever she performs under the spell induced by the mesmerist Svengali (the origin of that now commonly used term). First issued serially in "Harper's Monthly" in 1894, the novel sold 200,000 copies in America alone when it appeared in book form the next year. Artist, book illustrator, and cartoonist George Du Maurier (1834-96) specialized in lampooning the social pretensions of the nouveau riche in his role as a staff cartoonist for "Punch" magazine, but later turned to writing fiction due to worsening problems with his vision. "Trilby" was the second of his three novels, all of which contain supernatural elements (a device that was also employed by his more famous grand-daughter, Dame Daphne Du Maurier).
(ST13599-37)