(London: John Murray, 1871, 1900). 182 x 120 mm. (7 3/8 x 4 3/4"). Two separately printed works in three volumes. FIRST EDITION, First Issue of "Descent"; "New Impression, with Portrait" [Sixth Edition] of "Origin."
VERY ATTRACTIVE EMERALD GREEN CRUSHED MOROCCO BY BAYNTUN (stamp-signed on front turn-in), covers with gilt fillet border, raised bands, spine gilt in compartments with fan ornament at center, one red and one light blue morocco label, turn-ins with gilt scallop border and floral sprays at corners, marbled endpapers, all edges gilt. Descent with 76 engravings in the text; "Origin" with frontispiece portrait of Darwin, one folding diagram. Descent: Freeman 937; Garrison-Morton 170; Norman 599. "Origin": Freeman 457; [for 1859 first edition: PMM 344; Garrison-Morton 220; Norman 593]. Occasional faint foxing, but VERY FINE COPIES, clean and fresh internally in very lustrous bindings showing virtually no signs of use.
This handsomely bound set includes the first edition of "Descent of Man," which is especially notable for Darwin's first use of the word "evolution," and the sixth edition of "Origin of Species," the first version of that particular work in which "evolution" appears. Now virtually synonymous with his name, "evolution" appears on p. 2 of volume I of "Descent," noting the opposition of some older scholars of natural science to his theory of natural selection. Darwin considered "Descent" a continuation of his ground-breaking "Origin of Species," with special focus on man's descent from ape-like creatures. As DNB notes, "'Descent of Man' brought the full force of evolutionary proposals directly into the heart of ordinary Victorian life." Another area of controversy in "Descent" was Darwin's theory on sexual selection, which he used to explain physical characteristics more aesthetic than functional, such as the male peacock's splendid tail, the male hummingbird's iridescence, and the male human's beard--all features that might give the possessor advantage in the attraction of a mate. Widely considered the most important biological book ever written, "Origin" went through six revised editions following its first appearance in 1859. These three handsome volumes make a very appealing appearance on the shelf. (ST16601)
Add to Cart Price: $9,500.00
PJP Catalog: 78.203