Verses.London: Leonard Smithers, 1896 Stock Code: 145742
First edition of Dowson's first book of verse, one of 300 copies printed on handmade paper. Verses was Leonard Smithers's most lavish production, "in the opinion of Desmond Flower, it 'must rank as one of the most representative and most charming pieces of 'nineties typography'" (Nelson).
It includes some of the poet's most famous lyrics: "Vitae Summa Brevis" containing the expression "days of wine and roses" and "Non Sum Qualis eram Bonae Sub Regno Cynarae" the line "gone with the wind", taken by Margaret Mitchell for the title of her novel.
Octavo. Original japon vellum, titles to spine in gilt, decoration to front board in gilt from a design by Aubrey Beardsley, untrimmed.
Title page printed in red and black.
Bookplate of noted collector Christopher Clark Geest to front pastedown. Light wear and browning to extremities, rubbed, the binding otherwise sound, edges toned, else internally clean and fresh; a very good copy.
James G. Nelson, "Publisher to the Decadents: Leonard Smithers", pp. 235-40.
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