Gilded Age edition in an elaborately constructed vernacular dust jacket, with an original watercolor painted onto the front panel, and incorporating silk ribbons.
THE SCARLET LETTER
Though somewhat out of favor with critics after the Civil War, Hawthorne's star rose again in the last quarter of the 19th century in part due to the championing of major American voices like Henry James, who was instrumental in getting Hawthorne published as one of the first American writers in Morely's canon-making English Men of Letters series. This copy of a cheap, popular edition of Hawthorne's best-known work shows evidence an anonymous owner's interaction with the object, embellishing it with a custom protective jacket that has been beautifully hand painted – clearly a special project by the owner. A striking example of a 19th-century owner's personal book customization.
Read more: Butler, Critical Americans: Victorian Intellectuals and Transatlantic Liberal Reform, 147.
New York: John B. Alden, 1892. 7.75'' x 4.75''. Original cloth enclosed in custom homemade dust jacket with original watercolor on front panel, threaded with two 1.25'' wide pink silk ribbons, visible on rear panel and threaded underneath front panel, with extra length on both ends to create ties at fore-edge. 238 pages. Closed tear to title page. Jacket with several chips and closed tears, one ribbon with tear at front flap.
The Fine Print
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