The Works.London: Macmillan and Co., Limited, 1919-20 Stock Code: 96658
Signed by Hardy, one of 500 copiesThe Mellstock edition, one of 500 sets signed by the author on the limitation page of volume I. The Mellstock is one of the most attractive collected editions of Hardy, printed in a clear and legible type, this set in the original cloth in notably bright condition.
With the bookplate of James MacLehose (1857-1943) to the front pastedown, engraved by David Young Cameron, a fellow Glaswegian. MacLehose, a publisher and printer himself, was also the son-in-law of Alexander Macmillan, one of the founders of the firm which published this edition.
At Hardy's suggestion the edition was named after his fictional "Mellstock", a combination of the Dorset hamlet Stinsford, where his heart is now buried, with the Higher and Lower Bockhamptons. The publication was originally projected in July 1914 but was halted by the outbreak of the First World War. The text is largely a resetting of the Wessex edition with the exception of A Pair of Blue Eyes, for which Hardy sent the publishers five pages of corrections and additions on 18 June 1919 (Purdy, p. 288).
37 volumes, octavo. Original blue cloth, spine lettered and decorated in gilt, gilt roundel to front board.
Portrait frontispiece with tissue guard by William Strang and a Map of the Wessex of the Novels and Poems.
Spines gently rolled, extremities slightly rubbed, occasional minor foxing. A very good set.
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