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LANSDOWNE, Andrew.

A Life's Reminiscences. Scotland Yard.

In one-and-twenty dockets. With one hundred and twenty-one suggestive illustrations by Ambrose Dudley. [Bound with:] DANVERS, Milton. The Detective's Honeymoon; or, the Doctor of the "Pinjarrah." A Detective Story. London: Diprose & Bateman, [1894].

London, The Leadenhall Press, [1893] Stock Code: 115177
£375.00

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Notes

First illustrated edition (originally published in 1890) of this decidedly uncommon and highly regarded police memoir. Lansdowne's book came out at a time when the police were being portrayed negatively in popular fiction: "Real detectives responded by trying to influence public opinion in their favour. Police officers had been forbidden by the Police Code to share information with the press without authorization: 'officers who without authority give publicity to discoveries, tending to produce sensation and alarm, show themselves wholly unworthy of their posts'... but a number of experienced and senior Scotland Yard detectives broke their silence after retirement to write memoirs which defended their cadre against the calumnies of journalists and novelists. These included Andrew Lansdowne's A Life's Reminiscences of Scotland Yard (1890) and Inspector Maurice Moser's Stories from Scotland Yard (1890), Chief Inspector J. G. Littlechild's Reminiscences (1894)... and the appropriately named John Sweeney's At Scotland Yard (1905). These texts capitalized on the demand for detective stories while seeking to defend their integrity against attacks in those same stories" (Andrew Glazzard, Conrad's Popular Fictions: Secret Histories and Sensational Novels, 2016).
Lansdowne joined the Metropolitan Police in 1869 and rose to become a detective inspector in the Criminal Investigation Department (CID). His twenty-one "dockets" (or chapters) carry titles redolent of the pages of Sherlock Holmes: "A piece of blotting-paper", "A lady burglar", "The man with the bull neck", "The red-handled trunk". The other work here is a very scarce slim detective novel from the obscure publishing house of Diprose & Bateman. Milton Danvers penned several crime fictions and this one includes his female detective Rose Courtenay (mentioned in Kathleen Gregory Klein's The Woman Detective: Gender & Genre, 1995).
Lansdowne: Copac cites only BL and Cambridge in British and Irish institutional libraries and OCLC adds no further copies; Danvers: Copac locates only the BL copy and OCLC adds one more, at Emory University.

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Description

2 works, octavo (179 x 120 mm). Contemporary dark green pebble-grain library cloth, gilt lettered spine, red speckled edges.

Illustrations

First work illustrated by Ambrose Dudley.

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