First Issue, in the Original Binding, of Poe's Tales of the Grotesque and ArabesqueEdgar Allan Poe. Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque. Philadelphia: Lea and Blanchard, 1840.
First edition, first issue, with these points met: page 213, Volume II correctly numbered and with perfect type; four pages of advertisements bound in before title page in Volume II. Two twelvemo volumes. [1-3], -6[preface], -243 pages; i-iv[ads], [1-4], -222 pages, 223-228 appendix.
Publisher's purple muslin with printed paper spine labels. Spine labels worn, but Volume II spine label quite legible. Extremities show common wear. Rear inner hinge to Volume II cracked. Dampstaining to beginning of text of Volume I. Blank page preceding first page of text in Volume I has light pencil notations. Light scattered foxing. Housed in a beautiful full morocco pull-off box by Rivière and Son. Overall, a very good, sound set, quite rare in the nicely preserved original boards.
Following the success of "The Fall of the House of Usher," Poe was finally able to collect his writings in two volumes. Though this initial edition suffered mixed reviews and lukewarm sales, it later proved an important publication for the author and a much-revered item for the collector. Defending himself in the preface, Poe wrote of the criticism of his tales, "If in many of my productions terror has been the thesis, I maintain that terror is not of Germany but of the soul."
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