Welcome to Peter Harrington Books

Literary criticism & biography

Rare first editions, signed and inscribed copies, deluxe and collectible editions of books, pamphlets, and ephemera relating to critical writings about literature, including biographies and autobiographies of literary figures and printed collections of their correspondence.

Showing items 1-60 of 314

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  1. 130799comp
    First edition, first impression. An incredible association copy, presented by the author to the bohemian "Tiger-woman" Betty May, his inscription to the front free endpaper, "To Betty May with the author's love & regrets that it has been necessary to dig up all this stuff about Cefalù & Aleister (the old Beast 666) but... Learn More
    £3,750

    Stock Code: 130799

    signed

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  2. 129360detail
    First editions, first impressions, of the complete set of both Woolf's collected letters and diaries. The letters, edited by Nigel Nicolson, record in stunning detail the evolution of Woolf's unmistakable style and provide an impressively comprehensive gathering of her correspondence from childhood until her death in 1941.... Learn More
    £1,375

    Stock Code: 129360

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  3. 130958comp
    First edition, first impression, inscribed by Beaton on the front free endpaper, "Love to darling Winifred, Xmas 1939". The recipient was playwright and novelist, Winifred Ashton, who wrote under the pseudonym of Clemence Dane. This spoof autobiography is a satire of the world of the middle-European aristocrat, which even... Learn More
    £750

    Stock Code: 130958

    signed

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  4. Worthy women of our first century.
    First edition. This copy with the bookplate of Butler Place to the front pastedown, and the publishers' presentation inscription; "Mrs. Owen J. Wister with respects of the Publishers" to the first blank. As well as co-editing, Mrs Wister contributes a piece on Deborah Logan. Sarah Butler Wister was the eldest daughter of... Learn More
    £650

    Stock Code: 52144

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  5. 63062comp
    First edition, first printing. Inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper "To Nash and Marjorie - with longtime appreciation and highest respects & best wishes, from Eudora, June 1978". Nash Burger was a high school classmate of Welty's who became an editor at the New York Times Book Review. Learn More
    £1,000

    Stock Code: 63062

    signed

    Reserve

  6. 125519
    First edition, first impression. Ray Strachey (18871940) worked closely with Millicent Fawcett and the suffragist movement throughout her life and was secretary of the NUWWS from 1915 to 1920. Learn More
    £125

    Stock Code: 125519

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  7. 130847comp
    First edition, first impression, signed by the author on the title page, with his printed name struck through. A collection of Eliot's "most important" literary essays which "revisit the French symbolists and the development of language in twentieth-century poetry" (ODNB). Dedicated to Valerie, his secretary, whom he married... Learn More
    £1,250

    Stock Code: 130847

    signed

    Reserve

  8. My Life.
    First edition, limited issue, number 211 of 650 publisher's presentation copies, not for public sale. This copy bears the bookseller's ticket of the renowned Kamin Dance Bookshop and Gallery, New York, owned by the publisher Martin Kamin, to the front pastedown, giving the copy a lovely association to both the Parisian and... Learn More
    £625

    Stock Code: 81051

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  9. 130515comp
    First edition, first impression, presentation copy inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper to Princess Mary, "To Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal. With respect, gratitude and humble best wishes at Christmastime. Norman Hartnell, Christmas 1955." Hartnell (1901-1979) was the Dressmaker by Appointment to both... Learn More
    £750

    Stock Code: 130515

    signed

    Reserve

  10. 130466comp
    First edition, first impression. A superb presentation copy from the author to his unrequited love Ralph Partridge, inscribed on the front free endpaper: "Ralph from Lytton". Lytton Strachey and Ralph Partridge had a platonic, and possibly sexual, relationship, but the love was not returned on the latter's part. Strachey... Learn More
    £2,750

    Stock Code: 130466

    signed

    Reserve

  11. 117964

    An Autobiography.

    North Conway, New Hampshire: 1951

    First and sole edition, first printing, presentation copy from Gibson's widow Helen Whitney Gibson to Kate Davison, inscribed and dated 2 June 1952. This is the privately printed autobiography of the American businessman, bank president, and Chairman of the American Red Cross during World Wars I and II. It was published... Learn More
    £125

    Stock Code: 117964

    signed

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  12. 122395
    Virginia Woolf's original typescript, with her autograph corrections in eight places, for her first introduction to Mrs Dalloway, published in the Modern Library edition in 1928. Neither the first edition published by the Hogarth Press in 1925, nor the American edition published by Harcourt, Brace & Co later in the same... Learn More
    £27,500

    Stock Code: 122395

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  13. 130167comp
    A River Runs Through It is Maclean's..."> First edition, first printing, signed by the author on the front free endpaper. This copy is correct with all first printing issue points; a digit missing to the ISBN on the copyright page, "adways" for "always" on line 15, p. 27, and the ISBN complete on the dust jacket rear flap. A River Runs Through It is Maclean's... Learn More
    £2,750

    Stock Code: 130167

    signed

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  14. 129437
    A beautiful set of lantern lecture slides of key locations and figures in the Brontë sisters' lives. The majority of the plates are labelled in manuscript in ink, and are produced from an article in The Bookman, October 1904, with the text from The Bookman occasionally visible on the reverse of the plates. The photographs... Learn More
    £2,750

    Stock Code: 129437

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  15. 128392
    First US edition, first printing, of the posthumously published collection of 25 essays on the art of fiction and biography. Learn More
    £175

    Stock Code: 128392

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  16. 129711detail
    A handsomely bound set of the variorum of 1793, which was the last significant 18th-century edition and the last to involve Steevens directly. Jaggard quotes Lowndes's summary that this was "generally called Steevens's own edition" and "is by many considered the most accurate and desirable of all". The first two volumes... Learn More
    £7,500

    Stock Code: 129711

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  17. 129588
    First edition, first impression, of Yeats's autobiographical collection, compiling Reveries over Childhood and Youth (1914) with The Trembling of the Veil (1922) and some additional notes. Learn More
    £375

    Stock Code: 129588

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  18. 128967
    First edition, first issue with all required points where visible. Originally issued in 64 parts, the first 48 being issued by Fairburn, "the publication was then taken over by Cumberland, who issued 16 more parts" (Tooley). Abbey remarks that the "Fairburn venture must have been unsuccessful, for sets carrying his imprints... Learn More
    £2,250

    Stock Code: 128967

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  19. Essays on Philosophical Subjects.
    First Dublin edition, same year as the first London edition; Kress lists the Dublin printing first and calls the London "another issue" while Tribe calls the Dublin edition a piracy. The Essays were published five years after Smith's death and edited by the Scottish philosopher Dugald Stewart (1753-1828); his "Account of... Learn More
    £2,250

    Stock Code: 97132

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  20. 77017comp
    Third printing, originally published in 1970. Inscribed by the poet Alan Brownjohn in the margin above his section of the anthology (p. 263), "Signed for Nicholas Gammage - with all good wishes to you and for your poetry - Alan Brownjohn, 24th January 1974". Brownjohn and Gammage were both friends with Ted Hughes, who also... Learn More
    £65

    Stock Code: 77017

    signed

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  21. The Desire and Pursuit of the Whole.
    First edition, first impression, one of 2,020 copies. Presentation copy, inscribed by the editor on the front free endpaper to the author Ralph Straus: "For Ralph Straus, whose gifts are almost an numerous as Corvo's, & who loves books as much as I do. Very cordially, from his friend A.J. Dec., 1934." A. J. A. Symons (1900-1941),... Learn More
    £475

    Stock Code: 102584

    signed

    Reserve

  22. 50706
    £50

    Stock Code: 50706

    Reserve

  23. 127606comp
    First Edition. Freya Stark's personal copy of Professor William Ker's lectures delivered as Professor of Poetry in Oxford between 1920 and 1922, which was given to Stark by Ker's sister just a few weeks after Ker's death on 17th July and bears is inscribed to her, "Freya Stark. 6th August 1923. Love P.M.K Penelope M. Ker".... Learn More
    £750

    Stock Code: 127606

    signed

    Reserve

  24. 129036
    A handsomely bound copy of Robert Chapman's second edition of Austen's letters. This comprehensive edition was edited and annotated by Chapman and his wife, Katharine Marion Metcalfe, a fellow English scholar, and was first published in 1932. Learn More
    £350

    Stock Code: 129036

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  25. Madame Ambassador. The Life of Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit.
    First edition, first impression. Inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, "To Leah Horwitz with appreciation of all she has done for PPSEWA - which includes the land of Madame Ambassador. With best wishes. Anne Guthrie". Loosely inserted is a typed letter signed from the author to Horwitz thanking her for sending... Learn More
    £250

    Stock Code: 82367

    signed

    Reserve

  26. 125302
    First editions of Walter Pater's works. It was through his controversial first work, Studies in the History of the Renaissance (1873), that Pater became "publicly linked by reputation with the aesthetic school and the unorthodox sexualities associated with it through the work and lives of A. C. Swinburne and D. G. Rossetti"... Learn More
    £1,250

    Stock Code: 125302

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  27. A Survey.
    First edition, trade issue of Beerbohm's caricatures of public figures ranging from Joseph Conrad to David Lloyd George, scarce in this condition. There was also a deluxe limited edition of 275 numbered copies signed by the author. Learn More
    £425

    Stock Code: 104692

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  28. 118707
    First edition, wrappered issue. The South African poet and novelist William Plomer had been publisher's reader for Jonathan Cape from 1937. He was instrumental in the publication of Fleming's work and the dedicatee of Goldfinger. A limited hardcover issue was also produced. Learn More
    £400

    Stock Code: 118707

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  29. 124610
    First edition, first impression. Carpenter and Barnefield each contribute one half of this book, offering a psychoanalysis of Shelley and his poetry, focusing on his intermediate sexual identity. Learn More
    £50

    Stock Code: 124610

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  30. 103167comp
    First editions, first impressions. Presentation copies from Churchill to Robert Boothby: My Early Life with a pre-publication inscription on the preliminary blank: "Robert Boothby from Winston S. Churchill Oct. 14. 1930" (we have had another inscribed presentation copy similarly dated, six days before publication); this... Learn More
    £10,000

    Stock Code: 103167

    signed

    Reserve

  31. 127457
    First edition, first impression. A collection of reminiscences from Churchill's earlier life. Learn More
    £875

    Stock Code: 127457

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  32. A Critical Dictionary of English Literature and British and American Authors,
    Attractively bound set of Allibone's literary dictionary, first published in 1859. Learn More
    £175

    Stock Code: 100444

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  33. 87786
    First edition of the autobiography of Robert Owen (1771-1858), one of the most influential thinkers and social reformers of his time. Learn More
    £2,750

    Stock Code: 87786

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  34. 85374
    First edition, first impression, of this collection of essays by Kingsley Amis including "literary criticism, of writers as diverse and Hans Christian Andersen and Dylan Thomas and novels from Sorrell and Son to Portnoy's Complaint; articles on such topics as horror films, the use of language, the National Eisteddfod of... Learn More
    £100

    Stock Code: 85374

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  35. 118739detail
    A remarkable collection, including the dedication copy of the From the Jerusalem Diary, inscribed by the editor, Mary Gill, Eric Gill's widow, "To Austen St B. Harrison, with happy memories, from M.E.G.", with the Eric Gill-designed bookplate of Austen St Barbe Harrison to the front pastedown. Harrison, a close personal... Learn More
    £2,250

    Stock Code: 118739

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  36. image1
    Dorothy Bussy (née Strachey) had translated Bréal's book on Velazquez back in 1905 and the present letters have an easy intimacy throughout. In the first she introduces J. M. Keynes "(pronounced Canes) He is something of a swell an intimate friend of my brother Lytton's, Duncan Grant's chief patron, the headquarters... Learn More
    £5,000

    Stock Code: 114757

    signed

    Reserve

  37. 121002
    First edition, limited hardcover issue, one of 50 copies. An address given at the memorial for Ian Fleming, by the South African poet and novelist William Plomer. Plomer had been a publisher's reader for Jonathan Cape from 1937; he was instrumental in the publication of Fleming's work and the dedicatee of Goldfinger. Learn More
    £750

    Stock Code: 121002

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  38. i1
    A fine and longish letter in which Fitzgerald discusses Seldes's edition of Ring Lardner, a possible evening of one-act plays, and reviews of Tender Is the Night: "Just read the Lardner collection First and Last. At first I was disappointed because I had expected there would be enough stuff for an omnibus and I still feel... Learn More
    £10,000

    Stock Code: 44748

    Reserve

  39. 125516
    First edition, first impression, number 725 of 1,000 copies printed on handmade paper. Learn More
    £500

    Stock Code: 125516

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  40. 124445comp
    First edition, first impression, deluxe limited edition, number 19 of 100 copies signed by the author. The last time a copy of this rare edition is recorded at auction was in 1978. Poet and essayist Arthur Symons (1865-1945) is best known for The Symbolist Movement in Literature (1899), which was dedicated to his friend... Learn More
    £1,250

    Stock Code: 124445

    signed

    Reserve

  41. 124955comp
    Second edition, presentation copy inscribed by Lady Jane Shelley, Shelley's daughter-in-law, "The Countess of Malmesbury, from J. Shelley", on the front binder's blank. Jane Shelley was motivated to produce this memoir of her father-in-law as a response to his biography by Thomas Jefferson Hogg, which was published in 1858... Learn More
    £500

    Stock Code: 124955

    signed

    Reserve

  42. 125909comp
    First editions, first impressions. Both inscribed to "Derek" by the editor of the first volume, Rupert Pole, Nin's "duplicate husband" (New York Times obituary, 30 July 2006) and literary executor. In Henry and June; "For Derek, Finally the real story. The Missing Anaïs - the Passionate Woman, with love, Rupert, Sept. 1986",... Learn More
    £750

    Stock Code: 125909

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  43. 119977comp
    Inscribed by the author on the second blank, "Truly yours, Mark Twain, Dec /08". Uncommon inscribed, with five other copies traced at auction. Clemens often signed works under both his pseudonym and as Clemens; this novel is the only work to be published under the alternate pseudonym of Louis de Conte. Originally published... Learn More
    £2,250

    Stock Code: 119977

    signed

    Reserve

  44. 122102
    First edition, first impression. Learn More
    £500

    Stock Code: 122102

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  45. The Quest for Corvo. An Experiment in Biography.
    First edition, first impression, presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, "For Vincent, a tribute to a long a noble friendship, with the sincere and cordial salutations of his colleague in letters and admirer in life. A.J. Feb 3rd, 1934". The recipient, identified by a pencilled note, was Harold... Learn More
    £750

    Stock Code: 109896

    signed

    Reserve

  46. 124152
    First edition, first impression, of this account of 28 maternal ancestors of economist John Maynard Keynes, written by his first cousin, Neville Brown. There is a gift inscription by Milo Keynes (1924-2009), John Maynard Keynes's nephew, on the verso of the front free endpaper, "John and Julie Boyd, with very best wishes,... Learn More
    £50

    Stock Code: 124152

    Reserve

  47. 117409comp
    The Observer of A. J. Ayer: A Life in Philosophy by Ben..."> First edition, first impression, of Ayer's autobiography. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, "To Caroline Anne Tuell, with my best wishes from Freddie Ayer. Bournemouth, October 13 1977". Anthony Smith's review for The Observer of A. J. Ayer: A Life in Philosophy by Ben... Learn More
    £325

    Stock Code: 117409

    signed

    Reserve

  48. 105022
    A complete set of ten issues. The Angry Penguins Broadsheet was an offshoot of the magazine, Angry Penguins, which was devoted to modernist writings. The title came from Harris's poem, Mithridatum of Despair: "We know no mithridatum of despair/as drunks, the angry penguins of the night/straddling the cobbles of the square/tying... Learn More
    £2,500

    Stock Code: 105022

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  49. 123932
    First authorized separate edition. Originally published as prefaces to the long series of collected works of English poetry which Johnson had edited, these essays were here collected and published as a work in their own right, preceded by an unauthorised Dublin edition in 1780-81. "It was the simplest in style and expression... Learn More
    £1,500

    Stock Code: 123932

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  50. 122506
    First English and the best edition overall, in the preferred quarto format, originally published in Philadelphia in the same years (5 volumes, octavo). "Apart from freeing his slaves after Martha Washington's death, Washington's long and detailed will left his public and private papers to his favourite nephew, Associate... Learn More
    £7,250

    Stock Code: 122506

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  51. The Common Reader. Second Series.
    First edition, first impression, presentation copy, inscribed by the author to Ethel Smyth on the front free endpaper, "Ethel from Virginia 13 Oct 1932". Dame Ethel Smyth was a prominent composer, memoirist and suffragette, who first met Woolf in February 1930; she had just read A Room of One's Own, and hunted down its author... Learn More
    £7,500

    Stock Code: 79867

    signed

    Reserve

  52. 1
    First edition, first printing, of the influential biography that was Alex Haley's first book. Haley met Malcolm X in 1960 when he interviewed him for a piece on the Nation of Islam in the Reader's Digest, of which Haley was then senior editor. They met again when Haley interviewed the activist for Playboy, and the present... Learn More
    £875

    Stock Code: 84268

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  53. 122977
    First edition, second printing, of this controversial historical study, "the only comprehensive work in any language, to my knowledge, that unequivocally espouses the right of an older male to have social-sexual relations with a young boy" (Dr Albert Ellis's postscript). This copy has the ownership inscription of gay publisher... Learn More
    £200

    Stock Code: 122977

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  54. 122796comp

    My Life.

    New York: 2004

    First edition, first printing, presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the title page, "To my friend Judy Collins with thanks - Bill Clinton", additionally inscribed by Collins, with a heart, on the title page, together with a typed letter signed by Clinton. The letter reads: "Dear Judy: Happy birthday! I hope this... Learn More
    £2,500

    Stock Code: 122796

    signed

    Reserve

  55. 120440detail
    First edition thus, published under the editorship of writer and translator William Tooke (c.1744-1820). The General Biographical Dictionary was originally published in 1761 in 11 volumes, with a supplement released in 1767, "though the work is apparently extended only by the addition of three volumes, the actual augmentation... Learn More
    £1,500

    Stock Code: 120440

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  56. 109359
    First edition, trade issue of Beerbohm's caricatures of public figures ranging from Joseph Conrad to David Lloyd George. There was also a deluxe limited edition of 275 numbered copies signed by the author. Learn More
    £175

    Stock Code: 109359

    Reserve

  57. 114803
    First edition, first impression, first issue (in stiff boards). Blasting and Bombarding was the first of two autobiographical books written by Lewis (followed by Rude Assignment, 1950), and covers the period from 1914 to 1926, tracking Lewis's progress through the First World War and the literary and artistic upheavals of... Learn More
    £300

    Stock Code: 114803

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  58. 121114comp
    Signed limited edition, number 48 of 265 copies signed by the author and specially bound, with an original onlay motif of a Shakespearean theatre designed by Zaehnsdorf. Originally published in 1970 by Jonathan Cape under the title Shakespeare. Burgess wrote a number of works inspired by Shakespeare, including a... Learn More
    £750

    Stock Code: 121114

    signed

    Reserve

  59. Specimens of Scottish Literature 1325-1835.
    First edition, first impression. A very attractive copy. This volume compiles a wide selection of Scottish writing from the Early, Middle, and Modern Scots periods between 1325 and 1835, along with substantial critical apparatus. Learn More
    £100

    Stock Code: 86913

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  60. 114439comp
    First edition, first impression. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, "For Dennis Wheatley, from Nöel Coward". With Wheatley's bookplate to the front pastedown. Learn More
    £900

    Stock Code: 114439

    Reserve

Showing items 1-60 of 314

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