Description

    [Thomas De Quincey]. Confessions of an English Opium-Eater. London: Printed for Taylor and Hessey, 1823.

    Second book edition. Twelvemo (6.75 x 4.25 inches; 171 x 108 mm.). iv, 206, [6, ads] pp.

    Period-style full polished calf, single fillet border rolled in gilt, smooth spine tooled and lettered in gilt in compartments, gilt turn ins, marbled endpapers, top edge gilt, others uncut. Printed paper bookplate of Howard Wallingford affixed to rear pastedown. Contemporary ownership inscription ("Geo. John Miller") to upper outer corner of second front flyleaf. Twentieth century gift inscription to first front flyleaf. A few instances of subtle light foxing, else a very good copy.

    A handsome copy of this classic of English literature, De Quincey's first published work, and arguably the most famous work on drug addiction ever written. The highly imaginative and haunting prose in Confessions of an English Opium Eater was to have a profound impact on the work of Baudelaire, who borrowed from the work extensively, as well as modern writers like Jean Cocteau and William S. Burroughs, who re-popularized De Quincey in the later twentieth century.

    NCBEL III, 1232. Sterling 229 and Tinker 817 (the first edition).


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    October, 2008
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