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Posthumous Poems. Posthumous Poems. Posthumous Poems.
Posthumous Poems.
SHELLEY, Percy Bysshe.

Posthumous Poems.

Availability: In stock

Published: London Printed for John and Henry L. Hunt, 1824

Stock Code: 115209

OR On display in 100 Fulham Road


First edition, first issue without the errata. 500 copies were printed, and published by John and Henry Leigh Hunt. "Posthumous Poems, which included those inspired by Claire, Emilia Viviani, Sophia Stacey and Jane Williams, their identities discreetly masked by asterisks and initials, was published in an edition of five hundred in June 1824. Mary wrote the Preface herself. Opening it with a mild rebuke to Leigh Hunt, she offered an ardent defence of Shelley's name. Praising him as a fearless crusader for the 'improvement of the moral and physical state of mankind', she gave this as 'the chief reason why he, like other illustrious reformers, was pursued by hatred and calumny'... The chief aim of the Preface was to defuse the image of Shelley the atheist, the troublemaker, the rebel... Three hundred copies of Posthumous Poems had been sold when Sir Timothy Shelley, the poet's father, furious that his wishes to stop publication had been disregarded, ordered the remainder of the edition to be withdrawn only two months after publication" (Miranda Seymour, Mary Shelley, 2000, pp. 341-42).
This collection "includes 'Julian and Maddalo', 'The Witch of Atlas', 'Letter to Maria Gisborne', 'The Triumph of Life', 'Prince Athanase', 'Ode to Naples', 'Mont Blanc', as well as fifty-nine 'Miscellaneous Poems', nine 'Fragments', five translations, and 'Alastor', which was included because the original volume, published in 1816, was now very scarce (even Mary had found it difficult to track down a copy)" (Bodleian Libraries exhibition online: Shelley's Ghost, ). A choicely bound copy with an excellent provenance: from the library of the distinguished bibliophile Roderick Terry (1849-1933), president of the Newport Historical Society and the Redwood Library, with his fine engraved bookplate.

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Octavo (220 x 142 mm). Early 20th century dark blue morocco by Riviere & Son, richly gilt spine with a dot-and-flower pattern radiating from a central point within each compartment, sides with single-line gilt rules and dot-and-flower pattern corner pieces, top edges gilt, others untrimmed, gilt turn-ins with trailing floriate motifs at the corners, deep burgundy coated endpapers.


Binding just a little rubbed at extremities, inner joints partially cracked but sound, occasional spot of foxing. A very good, tall copy, bound without the errata


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