(Hartford: American Publishing Company, 1899). 215 x 140 mm. (8 1/2 x 5 1/2").  sample leaves, 5,  pp.
Publisher's flexible pebble-grained roan, gilt lettering on upper cover, marbled endpapers, top edge gilt. Etched series title page with emblem designed by Tiffany & Co. and 16 hand-printed plates on Japanese vellum, all with lettered guards. Front pastedown with sample green buckram spine for "Innocents Abroad." Ends of spine with shallow chips, front joint with one-inch crack at tail, extremities a bit rubbed (corners worn through to the thin boards), but the text and plates extremely pleasing, and a sound and overall very good copy of a fragile item that is difficult to find in better shape.
This modest prospectus announces the impending publication of a something considerably grander--a limited deluxe edition of 1,000 copies of the works of arguably the most popular American author in history. Among the Edition De Luxe's many agreeable features are: biographical criticism by Brander Matthews, a prominent literary scholar of the day; specially made "Old Chester Antique Rag" paper with the watermark "MARK TWAIN"; illustrations by "the most skilled and most popular" American artists, printed by hand press on "Imperial Japan vellum," with "only perfect impressions" to be used; frontispiece portraits in each volume depicting Twain as he looked at the time the title was originally issued; and etched titles with a Tiffany-designed monogram surrounded by vignettes "representing prominent episodes in the author's life." The prospectus gives only Holliston cloth as a binding for the set, but that is no doubt because collectors would presumably want to have volumes bound to suit their own taste (and the set, in fact, is often found in very handsome bindings). (ST15076)
Add to Cart Price: $3,000.00
PJP Catalog: NY20BF.047