A Rare Chance to Own a Genuine American Literary Treasure

    Herman Melville: A Handsome Copy of The First American Edition of Moby-Dick; or, The Whale. By Herman Melville, Author of "Typee," "Omoo," "Mardi," "White-Jacket." (New York: Harper & Brothers, Publishers, 1851). First American edition (Previously published the same year in London as a triple-decker under the title: The Whale. Twelvemo (7.25" x 5"). Xxiii, [1, blank], 634, [1, epilogue], [1, blank], [6, publisher's ads], [2, blank] pages. Publisher's original brown cloth, stamped in blind on the boards with a heavy rule frame and the publisher's circular device at center, and lettered in gilt on the spine. Original brown-orange coated endpapers. Double flyleaves at front and back. Binding professionally repaired at the spine, having been re-backed with portions of the original spine preserved. Gilt lettering is renewed at the top of the spine. Light to moderate scattered foxing, rear hinge cracked by still very sound, else a very good, attractive copy of this classic of American literature. Housed in a custom black felt-lined quarter morocco clamshell case by Asprey & Gerrard, with the spine in five compartments with four raised bands, and tooled and lettered in gilt. Melville's now-classic novel, Moby Dick, was initially misunderstood by critics and ignored by readers and as such was a publishing failure. A fire at Melville's publisher Harpers in 1853 destroyed the plates of his books and most of the copies remaining in stock, with only about sixty copies surviving the fire. "The publishers used as their text Melville's original manuscript. The Whale, as issued in London, was set from New York Sheets, with Melville's alterations." (-Bibliography of American Literature). "This book was expurgated for publication in England, the American text containing thirty-five passages not included in Bentley's edition." (-Sadleir, Excursions in Victo

    Fees, Shipping, and Handling Description: Books & Catalogs (view shipping information)

    Sales Tax information  |  Terms and Conditions

    Bidding Guidelines and Bid Increments

    Glossary of Terms

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2007
    25th-26th Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 5,530

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $9) per lot.

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)

    Floor auctions

    Open for bidding: (View All)

    Fine Art
    Ends on 01/30/2018

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Consign to the 2020 October 27 Domain Names Signature Auction - Dallas.

    Learn about consigning with us

    The resulting auction of my property overwhelmed me. I want to thank Tom Slater and the Heritage team for a very satisfactory experience and profitable result with my historical consignment.
    Henry L.,
    Lexington, KY
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search

    Recent auctions

    2017 December 10 Arms & Armor, Civil War & Militaria Signature Auction - Dallas
    2017 December 10 Arms & Armor, Civil War & Militaria Signature Auction - Dallas
    REALIZED $1,733,427