New York: Charles L. Webster & Company, 1889. First edition. Near Fine. Extraordinary copy with all three of the earliest issue points: "The S King" on p. 59, no damage to type on p. 72 and, most uncommon, the half-title is printed on the recto of the frontispiece. This copy with the geometric-designed end-papers. A lovely copy overall, easily Near Fine, with end-paper just starting to crack at the lower rear hinge, but holding well and without repair. Top edge a trifle dusty and the pages over-opened at p. 320, otherwise bright and fresh. At the time of writing this description, no other copy is available with all three early issue points. "Most collectors are content with a copy with early states of pages 59 and 72, and any copy with the extremely rare half-title is coveted regardless of the other states." (Kevin MacDonnell, "Collecting Mark Twain...") One of the great humorist's classic works. "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court" follows the adventures of an engineer who's sent backwards in time to the Middle Ages - and the realm of King Arthur. Twain worked on the book in stops and starts in the 1880s, before finishing it in 1889. Strangely enough, along with some contemporary works by H.G. Wells and Edward Bellamy, "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court" is considered one of the early works in the science fiction, "time-travel" genre. "…we feel that in this book our arch-humorist imparts more of his personal quality than in anything else he has done. Here he is to the full the humorist, as we know him; but he is very much more…. The delicious satire, the marvellous wit, the wild, free, fantastic humor are the colors of the tapestry, while the texture is a humanity that lives in every fibre. At every moment the scene amuses, but it is all the time an object-lesson in democracy. It makes us glad of our republic and our epoch; but it does not flatter us into a fond content with them" (William Dean Howells in the Atlantic). Near Fine.
(Inventory #: 1679)
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