First American edition of the wild Gothic tale of romance and betrayal, published only a few months after the nearly unobtainable London first.
"Fascinated by strange magic we read what we dislike [...] we are spell-bound, we cannot choose but read." – contemporary review in the LITERARY WORLD
The tale of the moors remains one of the most polarizing novels in the English tradition, yet its preeminence in that tradition is beyond doubt. Brutality and passion drive the plot, which is subtly executed with a virtuosity unmatched even by the author's famed sisters. The complexity of the main characters, who exhibit equally dramatic virtues and vices, was a revolutionary choice in the Victorian era, when protagonists typically acted only with exemplary conduct. As a result, the story of Catherine and Heathcliff has become a turbulent dream of our collective psyche. This American edition was published only a few months after the London, which is legendarily scarce: recent copies have all sold for into the six figures. Emily Brontë would die of tuberculosis only eight months after this edition was published. An important edition of the masterwork that has baffled and intrigued us for generations.
New York: Harper & Brothers, 1848. Octavo. 7.25'' x 4.75''. Modern half brown sheep over 19th-century marbled boards, spine ruled and lettered in gilt. New endpapers only at rear. Binder stamp, "Baker Bindery / Anniston, Alabama," on verso of front free endpaper. 288 pages. Expert marginal paper repairs to a few leaves (including gutter of title page), some instances of spotting, little spot of ink on bottom edge: overall fresh.
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