First American edition, in the original boards, of the book many consider the beginning of modern science fiction, a vengeful tale of a scientist's artificial human creation gone wrong.
First published anonymously and to little notice in 1818, it wasn't until the 1830s that Frankenstein seized the popular imagination. This first American edition includes the preface by the author from the 1818 true first edition (now exceptionally scarce), rather than the more recent introduction of the 1831 edition. Inspired by reading "German stories of ghosts, " Mary Godwin (not yet Shelley) and her companions Lord Byron and John Polidori made a game of composing monster stories to pass the unseasonably cold 1816 summer at Lake Geneva. This introduction puts more emphasis on the scientific ideas undergirding the story, a trait which speaks directly to the book's status as a landmark in science fiction. A wonderful copy of this cultural touchtone from the first time it was produced upon American shores.
Philadelphia: Carey, Lea, & Blanchard, 1833. Full title: Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus. By Mary W. Shelly [sic] Two 12mo. volumes, each 7.75'' x 4.5''. Publisher's original boards, with quarter cloth spines and printed paper spine labels, uncut. With both half titles; 4 pages of ads at the beginning of volume I and 19 pages of ads at the end of volume II. 4, x, 11-201 ; 197, , ,  pages. Contemporary pencil ownership signature dated 1833 on front fly leaf of both volumes, early ink doodle on front fly leaf of volume I, faint early ownership stamp on front fly leaf of volume II, pencil note in shorthand on rear fly leaf of volume II. Housed in a custom quarter green morocco clamshell box. Expected wear to boards and paper labels, with some lettering affected, light to moderate foxing in text and a few signatures embrowned: remarkable in original boards.
Very good plus.
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