W. M. THACKERAY FIRST EDITIONS AT ASH RARE BOOKS

First editions at Ash Rare Books

W. M. THACKERAY FIRST EDITIONS AT
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FIRST EDITIONS OF WILLIAM MAKEPEACE THACKERAY

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THACKERAY, W.M. (William Makepeace), 1811-1863 : VANITY FAIR : A NOVEL WITHOUT A HERO.

THACKERAY, W.M. (William Makepeace), 1811-1863 : VANITY FAIR : A NOVEL WITHOUT A HERO.

London : Bradbury & Evans, 1848. First edition, bound from the original monthly parts published between January 1847 and July 1848. The parts in first state, with the “rustic” heading to the first chapter, the inadvertent “Mr. Pitt” rather than “Sir Pitt” on p.453, and the notorious “Marquis of Steyne” wood-engraving (p.336) – an illustration said to have been suppressed, under threat of court action, for its allegedly libellous resemblance to the Third Marquis of Hertford. This has been disputed, but the portrait certainly only appears in the earliest copies of the book – and disappeared very early in the book’s life cycle.
Demy 8vo (214 x 131mm). xvi,624pp. Etched plates and highly entertaining text illustrations by Thackeray himself. Bound, without half-title, in a recent half green calf, banded and richly gilt, with burgundy label, in a pleasing imitation of contemporary style; marbled sides; plates spotted in varying degrees, but the text clean; a very good copy in an attractive binding.

£850

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THACKERAY, W.M. (William Makepeace), 1811-1863 : THE HISTORY OF HENRY ESMOND, ESQ. A COLONEL IN THE SERVICE OF HER MAJESTY Q. ANNE. WRITTEN BY HIMSELF.

THACKERAY, W.M. (William Makepeace), 1811-1863 : THE HISTORY OF HENRY ESMOND, ESQ. A COLONEL IN THE SERVICE OF HER MAJESTY Q. ANNE. WRITTEN BY HIMSELF.

London : Smith, Elder & Co., 1852-1853. First edition : a mixed set, with the second and third volumes marked “second edition” (i.e. the second printings of the first edition). Opening in 1691 in the days of William of Orange and Queen Mary, ending under Queen Anne in 1718, and generally considered the best historical novel of its time. Interesting in bringing in Addison, Steele and Swift as characters, Trollope thought it Thackeray’s masterpiece, although George Eliot found it “the most uncomfortable book you can imagine”.
Three volumes. Crown 8vo (183 x 121mm). 344; vi,(320); vi,324pp. Bound in a slightly later Victorian half cherry polished calf, banded and gilt; green labels; marbled sides and endpapers; sprinkled edges; just a hint of rubbing; a few minor internal marks and spots, but a very good set. With the decorative Carr Manor, Meanwood, bookplate of the distinguished physician Sir Thomas Clifford Allbutt (1836-1925) of Leeds, inventor of the clinical thermometer, in each volume.

£250

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[THACKERAY, W.M. (William Makepeace), 1811-1863] : THE ROSE AND THE RING; OR, THE HISTORY OF PRINCE GIGLIO AND PRINCE BULBO. A FIRE-SIDE PANTOMIME FOR GREAT AND SMALL CHILDREN. BY MR. M. A. TITMARSH.

[THACKERAY, W.M. (William Makepeace), 1811-1863] : THE ROSE AND THE RING; OR, THE HISTORY OF PRINCE GIGLIO AND PRINCE BULBO. A FIRE-SIDE PANTOMIME FOR GREAT AND SMALL CHILDREN. BY MR. M. A. TITMARSH.

London : Smith, Elder & Co., 1855 [but 1854]. First edition. The last of Thackeray’s Christmas stories, a satirical fairy tale, wonderfully illustrated with Thackeray’s own numerous sketches. “But in the meanwhile, and for a brief holyday, let us laugh and be as pleasant as we can. And you elder folks – a little joking and dancing and fooling will do even you no harm. The author wishes you a merry Christmas, and welcomes you to the Fire-side Pantomime”.
Crown 8vo (177 x 129mm). iv,128pp. Eight plates. Numerous illustrations in text. Bound in a handsome early twentieth-century full tan calf, banded in gilt, by Riviere; red labels; all edges gilt; inner gilt dentelles; marbled endleaves; slight scratch to rear board; some internal marks and spots; one leaf with a short repaired tear, but still an attractive copy in a fine binding.

£250

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[THACKERAY, W.M. (William Makepeace), 1811-1863] – “PENDENNIS, Arthur – editor” : THE NEWCOMES. MEMOIRS OF A MOST RESPECTABLE FAMILY.

[THACKERAY, W.M. (William Makepeace), 1811-1863] – “PENDENNIS, Arthur – editor” : THE NEWCOMES. MEMOIRS OF A MOST RESPECTABLE FAMILY.

London : Bradbury & Evans, 1855. First edition. Set in the decades following on from “Vanity Fair” (and reintroducing some of the characters in peripheral roles), Thackeray gives his most complete exploration of character, wealth, marriage and religion. “One of the few immortal novels ... As a novel of English upper and middle class life, it remains without a rival” (Helen Rex Keller).
Two volumes. Demy 8vo (216 x 134mm). viii,380; viii,(376)pp. Frontispieces, extra pictorial titles, forty-four plates and numerous wood-engravings in the text by the celebrated Richard Doyle (1824-1883). Bound (without half-titles) in a handsome near contemporary half crimson roan, banded and gilt, by James Maclehose (1811-1885) of Glasgow; marbled sides, edges and endleaves; a hint of rubbing and bruising; a few tiny scuffs; a handful of spots, but overall a very good, clean, bright and sound set. With the attractive gold-printed pictorial bookplate of A. P. Urquhart in each volume, and the small book label of the distinguished Newcastle bookseller Robert D. Steedman in the first.

SOLD

[THACKERAY, W.M. (William Makepeace), 1811-1863] : A LITTLE DINNER AT TIMMINS’S : AND THE BEDFORD-ROW CONSPIRACY.

[THACKERAY, W.M. (William Makepeace), 1811-1863] : A LITTLE DINNER AT TIMMINS’S : AND THE BEDFORD-ROW CONSPIRACY.

London : Bradbury & Evans, 1856. First British edition. Two stories, with Thackeray satirical on social climbing, and teasing on a young and possibly mismatched couple.
Crown 8vo (183 x 120mm). 82 + [6]pp advertisements dated July 1856. Bound in a late nineteenth-century full red-brown crushed morocco, banded and gilt, by Peter Alexander Riarch (1836-1888?), a gifted pupil of the great Francis Bedford, last heard of in Cincinnati in 1888; inner gilt dentelles; top edge gilt; marbled endleaves; original yellow pictorial wrappers and advertisements preserved at rear; just a hint of rubbing; some occasional internal spots; a few miniscule repairs, but a very good copy of a Thackeray scarcity.

£200

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THACKERAY, W.M. (William Makepeace), 1811-1863 : CHRISTMAS BOOKS : MRS. PERKINS’S BALL. OUR STREET. DR. BIRCH.

THACKERAY, W.M. (William Makepeace), 1811-1863 : CHRISTMAS BOOKS : MRS. PERKINS’S BALL. OUR STREET. DR. BIRCH.

London : Smith, Elder & Co., 1866. An early collected edition of Thackeray’s gentle and engaging social satires, delightfully illustrated with his own drawings, which were originally published as Christmas books between 1846 and 1848. “Eschewing what has become a species of conventional Christmas mannerism – depending for interest and genial tone of colouring neither upon yule logs, nor plum puddings, nor branches of mistletoe, nor smoking boar’s heads garnished with bay sprigs and rosemary – Mr. Thackeray’s Christmas offering has all the peculiar and original characteristics of the individual mind of its producer ... the very incarnation of riot-running fancy” (Morning Chronicle, 29th December 1846).
Crown 8vo (183 x 133mm). viii,(52); 56; (52)pp. Folding frontispiece, engraved title and fifty engraved and lithographed plates from Thackeray’s own designs. Bound, without half-title, in an elegant contemporary half chestnut roan, banded and gilt; black label; marbled edges, by Andrew Grieve of Edinburgh (1812-1880), with his blind-stamp; some very minor rubbing and wear; a few spots to the endpapers, but a very good copy in a most attractive binding. With the bookplate of the Reverend John Mitchell Harvey (1835-1876).

£125

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THACKERAY, W.M. (William Makepeace), 1811-1863 : THE FATAL BOOTS, AND COX’S DIARY.

THACKERAY, W.M. (William Makepeace), 1811-1863 : THE FATAL BOOTS, AND COX’S DIARY.

London : Bradbury & Evans, 1860. Two early and amusing Thackeray pieces originally written for the “Comic Almanacks” of 1839 and 1840 and first published in this format in 1855.
Crown 8vo (20cm). 100pp. Original yellow decorative wrappers; a little worn, marked, chipped and creased, but a reasonable copy of a fragile production. Housed in a custom-made cloth box.

£20

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