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[LAMB, Charles.]

Beauty and The Beast

Or A Rough Outside with Gentle Heart A Poetical Version of an Ancient Tale illustrated with a series of elegant engravings ...

Published: London: by B. McMillan, for M. J. Godwin, [c.1811]

Stock code: 66920

Price: £12,500

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First edition, the “surprize” issue (page 7, line 11). The title is printed on the front wrapper; the back wrapper has the cut depicting a scene from Homer, with the printed quotation beneath it. “There seems to be no positive proof that Lamb was the author of this little book … [but] as we know that Lamb was familiar with all the circumstances, and as he had written successful books for Godwin, and was not above such work, there seems ground for believing that Lamb was the actual author” (Roff). At least four copies of the “surprize” issue (including that in the British Library) are known without the title and folding sheet of music, suggesting that some copies were so issued. “Very rare in any condition” (Roff/Livingston pp. 113ff).

Sextodecimo (115 x 96 mm), pp. 32. Brown crushed morocco gilt extra by Sangorski and Sutcliffe (signed on lower rear turn-in), gilt edges; original blue printed pictorial stiff wrappers bound in, engraved vignette on back cover. Housed in a brown rounded spine splicase with chemise. 8 hand-coloured plates. Without printed title-page and engraved sheet of music as often. Wrappers a little soiled, a very good copy.

Bibliography: Gumuchian 3589.

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