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132450
THOREAU, Henry D.

Walden; or, Life in the Woods.

Availability: In stock

Published: Boston Ticknor and Fields, 1854

Stock Code: 132450

£8,500
OR On display in 43 Dover Street

Notes

First edition. Following the failure of his first book, A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers, Walden was not a runaway success. The edition of 2,000 took five years to sell through, but it was from the very first an immensely influential text, and remains so today: "For almost a hundred years an inspiration to nature lovers, to philosophers, to sociologists and to persons who love to read the English language written with clarity" (Grolier). This copy has the advertisements dated May 1854 - the earliest state of the advertisements is April 1854, but as the book was not published until 12 July 1854 there is no priority of issue. Other advertisements go as late as September 1855; although BAL states that they are of "no known bibliographical significance" the pre-publication advertisements are obviously preferable.
Provenance: from the library of J. Roy W. Barrette, with his bookplate to the front pastedown. Barrette was the author of the Thoreau-inspired work A Countryman's Journal: Views of Life and Nature from a Maine Coastal Farm (1981), and two sequels. Also with the contemporary ownership signature of one A. J. H. Pugh to the front free endpaper. A commemorative stamp of Thoreau (5 cents, 1967) is additionally affixed to the front pastedown.

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Description

Octavo. Original brown ribbed cloth, spine lettered in gilt, large decorative device within panels in blind to endpapers, pale yellow endpapers. Housed in a custom brown cloth box, spine lettered in gilt (a little rubbed).

Illustrations

Wood-engraved title-page vignette of Thoreau's hut, chart of Walden Pond (with the publisher's imprint - later state but no priority of issue), and 8-page publisher's catalogue dated May 1854 bound between the rear endpapers.

Condition

Spine ends lightly chipped with sympathetic cloth strips for reinforcement, else unrestored; some very light rubbing to cloth, a few minor fox marks but generally clean internally. A very nice copy in the original cloth.

Delivery

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