WORDSWORTH, William.

The Prelude,

Or, Growth of a Poet's Mind; an autobiographical poem.

London: Edward Moxon, 1850 Stock Code: 146973
£750.00
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Charlotte Bronte's husband's copy

First edition of Wordsworth's autobiographical testament, here the copy of Charlotte Bronte's husband Arthur Bell Nicholls (1819-1906), with his ownership signature to the front free endpaper, in the town of Haworth, where he was vicar.

The Prelude was begun during otherwise unfruitful visit to Germany with Coleridge in the winter of 1798 but only published after Wordsworth's death. "As he chronicled his life up to 1798 Wordsworth re-examined his political, religious, and aesthetic convictions and expanded the poem's scope so majestically that when it was completed in 1805 it had grown from two to thirteen books. It is Wordsworth's masterpiece, but as it was conceived throughout as a prelude to a greater work, The Recluse, so long as Wordsworth remained committed to the project for the philosophical poem, the autobiographical one had to remain unpublished. It was Wordsworth's widow and executors in 1850 who called it The Prelude. In Wordsworth's lifetime it was always known as 'The Poem to Coleridge' or 'Growth of a Poet's Mind'" (ODNB).

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Description

Octavo. Original brown cloth, spine lettered in gilt, covers blocked in blind, yellow endpapers, 8pp. publisher's catalogue (November 1849) tipped-in to front free endpapers.

Condition

Light sunning to spine and extremities, a little bumped, contents clean, pp. 355-366 loosening at foot but holding. An excellent copy.

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