Das Kapital. Kritik der politischen Oekonomie.
Erster Band.Hamburg, Otto Meissner, 1867 Stock Code: 134105
NotesFirst edition, advance review copy (stamped "Recensionsexemplar" on the front wrapper), with a printed slip issued by the publisher Otto Meissner, completed in manuscript two days after publication, inviting the editors of Die Grenzboten to publish a review.
Published in Leipzig, Die Grenzboten: Zeitschrift für Politik und Literatur was one of the most influential German periodicals, the organ of the National Liberal Party. The editor Max Jordan (1837-1906), now best remembered as an art historian, had taken over publication of the Grenzboten together with Gustav Freytag in 1861. He remained in the position until 1871. Jordan forwarded both slip and book to Friedrich Heinrich Wilhelm Böttcher (1842-1922), a well-known journalist of national-liberal sympathies, adding his personal manuscript note to the verso of Meissner's slip. It appears, however, that Böttcher did not review it.
Meissner's printed form, laid into this copy with some ink offsetting inside the front wrapper, is completed by hand in ink, with a note on the blank verso: "Durch Firmen Herbig in Leipzig, An die verehrliche Redaction der Grenzboten in Leipzig, Beifolgend beehre ich mich, Ihnen unten verzeichnetes Werk zur gefälligen Besprechung gratis zu übersenden, mit dem Ersuchen, mir die betreffende Recension baldigst zugehen lassen zu wollen. Hamburg, 16/9/67, Hochachtungsvoll, Otto Meissner. 1. Marx, Das Kapital 1. Band." Jordan has forwarded this to Böttcher, with his added note: "Wollen Sie, geehrter Herr Dr., den Grenzboten eine Anzeige des Buches widmen? Mit bestem Gruß, Jordan".
This is only the second copy in original wrappers we have seen in over 35 years, the other being in a private collection. There is also a copy at the Otaru University of Commerce in Japan. Rare Book Hub lists 25 copies, all in bindings. The first edition was 1,000 copies.
Hailed as one of "the most influential pieces of writing in world history" (International Institute of Social History in Amsterdam), Das Kapital was the culmination of Marx's many years' work in the British Museum. This first volume was the only one published during Marx's lifetime. The later volumes, edited by Engels from the author's manuscript, did not appear until 1885 and 1894.
Octavo. Original printed yellow wrappers, spine and front wrapper lettered in black. Housed in a custom cloth box.
Front wrapper stamped "Recensionsexemplar". Printed slip loosely inserted.
Front wrapper chipped and soiled, with old tape repairs lifted, now restored with archival tissue, most of the original printed spine preserved under archival tissue, the rear printed wrapper missing, upper outer corner of title repaired, the final text leaf with old tape repairs removed and restored. Internally a good, clean, uncut copy, corners a little dog-eared, some chipped away, with minimal spotting and edge toning; a remarkable survival.
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