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Home » Browse » English literature pre-1900 » CONRAD, Joseph. - The Nigger of the “Narcissus”. A Tale of the Sea.
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The Nigger of the “Narcissus”. A Tale of the Sea.
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CONRAD, Joseph.

The Nigger of the “Narcissus”. A Tale of the Sea.

Published: London: William Heinemann, 1898

Stock code: 84961

Price: £12,500

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First published English edition. Rare presentation copy inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, “To Miss Watson from her very faithful friend and servant, the Author. 24th December, 1897”. Helen May Watson (1875–1967) married Conrad’s close friend Edward Lancelot Sanderson (the dedicatee of An Outcast of the Islands) in 1898. In an affectionate letter to Sanderson on 26 December 1897 sending him “all the wishes suitable to the season and which friendship may dictate” Conrad ends by referring to this copy: “My affectionate regards and duty to Miss Watson. I’ve sent off a copy of the ‘N.’ for her. You must wait for yours a little. With love Ever Yours Joseph Conrad” (Collected Letters, I, p. 435). Signed and inscribed copies of Conrad novels published before 1900 are exceptionally rare, and we can locate only two examples of Nigger of the “Narcissus” at auction since 1990. This copy the first issue with the publisher’s catalogue in the earlier state of 16 pages rather than 32. Cagle’s b binding with publisher’s name at foot of spine of a uniform 3mm in height. From the library of Conrad collector Stanley J. Seeger, with his bookplate.

Octavo. Original grey cloth, titles to spine and upper board gilt. With publisher’s ad on verso of half-title and with 4 page publisher’s ad and 16 page Heinemann catalogue at rear. Cloth rubbed with a few small worn spots, brown spot to lower board, hinges starting, endpapers tanned, spotting to contents, especially to pages 112 and 113, spine cracked in the gutter between pages 64 and 65, 80 and 81, and 160 and 161. A very good copy.

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