([New Haven: Printed by Yale University Press for] The Limited Editions Club, 1959). 235 x 178 mm. (9 1/4 x 7"). x, , 407,  pp. No. 254 OF 1,500 COPIES, signed by the illustrator.
VERY FINE GILT PICTORIAL DARK BLUE MOROCCO BY BAYNTUN-RIVIERE (signed on rear turn-in), front cover with French fillet border and large center panel with titling at the top and a scene in gilt below showing a ship under full sail, the setting sun in the background, and tropical vegetation (including a tall palm tree) in the left foreground, raised bands (decorated with a gilt chain rule), spine in compartments formed by gilt rules and featuring a gilt anchor, red and green labels, gilt ruled and decorated turn-ins, watered silk endleaves, all edges gilt. In custom-made imitation morocco slipcase. Lithographed illustrations in the text by Lynd Ward (some full-page, some in color). Newmand & Wiche 300. ◆A pristine copy.
This is an attractively produced edition of one of the great modern English novels, both in terms of psychological delineation and innovative narrative technique; and our copy is offered in an appropriately nautical binding by the last of the great Victorian trade binderies still in family ownership. Polish-born Joseph Conrad (1857-1924) led a roving life as a sailor aboard French and British ships trading in exotic ports of Asia, South America, and Africa before he began his career as a novelist with "Almayer's Folly" in 1895. He wrote in English, in a style sometimes characterized as "impressionistic," with a phenomenal command of the language, despite not having learned it until he was an adult. Conrad's stories of the sea fascinate the reader not only for their remote settings and adventurous plots, but also for their psychological veracity and investigation of moral issues. For example, the present work, his best-known novel, centers on the guilt and atonement of its central character, Jim, an officer who commits the unforgivable sin of jumping overboard, rather than going down with his apparently sinking vessel. Only it somehow stays afloat, and Jim is left to combat a stalking opprobrium of the highest order. Founded in Bath in 1894, the Bayntun bindery has provided beautiful bindings for bibliophiles for more than a century. In 1937, Bayntun acquired the Riviere bindery, which had been in business since 1829, and began signing its bindings "Bayntun-Riviere," as here. (ST16866j)