Thursday, April 27, 2017

National Poetry Month Titles: Five singular works spanning four hundred years.

Clements, A.C. , The Mystical Poetry of Thomas Traherne (Harvard, 1st. ed., 1969) ISBN 674-59750-8. HBB price: $45. A reconsideration of the mystical English poet (c. 1636-1674).

SPECIAL ATTRIBUTES : Inscribed and signed by the author to a colleague, Prof. Glenn Burne. Academic hardcover published for the trade; contains a Preface, an introduction, notes and an index; [xii] + 232 pages; approximately 5 1/2" x 8 1/4"; pale yellow cloth covered boards with title lettered in green on the spine; printed dust-jacket.


Exterior — clean and presentable ... exceptionally well-preserved
Binding — Solid
Interior — Clean and unmarked throughout. Signed inscription from the author on the front fly-leaf : "To Glenn, with the hope that in reading this book you may find much of the pleasure that I did in writing it. Art."  Burne was a highly respected scholar and professor. He retired as chair of the English Department of the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

The dust jacket has modest surface rub and a bit of nicking and tears about the edges.

McKuen, Rod, ...and Autumn Came (Cheval Books, 1st ed., limited edition, signed and numbered by the author, November, 1969). LOC 72-105891. Very fine limited edition of McKuen’s first, 1954, collection of poetry. Folio size, linen boards on fine paper; gilt title plate on cover. Illustrations by Anthony Goldschmidt. Copy number B-601. McKuen (1933-2015) was one of the most popular mid-20th century American poets and songwriters. HBB price: $195 obo.


Meynell, Alice, The Poems of Alice Meynell: The Complete Edition (Scribners, 1st ed., 1923). Suffragist and editor, Alice Meynell (1847-1922) was also a highly skilled poet. This is the first American collection of her complete works. Hardcover, no dust jacket. Very good condition. HBB price: $15.

Milton, John, Paradise Lost (Easton Press, The 100 Best Books Ever Written Collector’s Edition, 1st. ed., 1976). Leather bound w/22k gold accents. Attractive moire end pages with silk ribbon page marker. Smyth sewn with concealed muslin joints. Full leather with hubbed spine. Gilt edges. Fine condition. HBB price: $200 obo.

Blind, broke and out of favor, Milton sold the copyright to Paradise Lost on this day, 400 years ago. As notes, “He signed an agreement with Samuel Simmons, a London publisher, by which he sold the copyright of Paradise Lost for five pounds, plus five pounds for the sale of each of three subsequent editions, an edition comprising 1,500 copies. Milton received a second five pounds in April 1669, making a grand total of 10 pounds to the author of England’s greatest epic. After his death, Milton’s widow Elizabeth sold all remaining rights for eight pounds to Simmons, who became perpetual copyright owner.”

Today the 18 pounds Paradise Lost fetched would equal US$3873.92.

Parliament abolished the notion of perpetual copyright in the Statute of Anne (1710), which provided for a 14-year copyright period with a right of renewal for fourteen more. It also rested copyright with authors, not their publishers.


Nesbit, E., and Mack, Robert Ellice, Morning Songs and Sketches (E.P. Dutton & Co. 1890).  Elegant octavo volume; 32 pages of poetry and illustrations in both color and black-and-white. Printed in Heidelberg. Gilt edging. Very good condition. HBB price: $225 obo.


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