Offered by: Shapero Gallery
105 New Bond Street London W1S 1DN , England Call Seller 44.207.493.0876


The Bostonians. by Henry JAMES

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  • Description
    JAMES, Henry.

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    The Bostonians.
    Stock Code 111876
    London, Macmillan and Co., 1886

    Current price$23,812.00
    A superb set of one of James' most famous but controversial novels. The Bostonians was from its initial publication in serial form, a divisive work, with many reviewers of the time feeling it was uncharitable in its depiction of the liberal and intellectual ambitions of the Bostonians it seemed to send up. Other reviewers felt the work was overly political in its treatment of its subject matter, including the emerging social reform movements of the time, notably feminism, which James himself was, it seems, somewhat ambivalent about. That Olive's apparent attraction to Verena could potentially indicate a lesbian aspect has been the subject of more recent speculation and adds another dimension both to the work and the motives and behaviour of the main characters (The Bostonians refers primarily to these two characters Olive and Verena, 'as they appeared to the mind of Ransom, the southerner and outsider, looking at them from New York' [James, Henry James: Letters. Volume III: 1883–1895, 1980]).

    Edel & Laurence states that the first printing comprised 500 copies, published 16 February 1886, with a second, undifferentiated impression of 100 copies issued the following month.

    First edition; 3 vols, 8vo; advertisements at end of vols. II & III, the odd marginal spot, not affecting text, otherwise near-fine; publisher's dark green cloth, double-panelled in black, gilt lettering, contemporary ownership inscriptions to the front free endpapers of the first and last volumes, dated 1887, slight bumping to exrtremities, spines very gently rolled but a truly exceptional set of great scarcity thus.

    Edel & Laurence A28a
  • More Information
    Documentation: Documented elsewhere (similar item)
    Period: 19th Century
    Condition: Good.
    Styles / Movements: Traditional
    Dealer Reference #: 111876
    Incollect Reference #: 720112
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