Paris, E. Dentu, 1874.
12mo [175 x 110] of (1) l., viii pp., pp. 7 to 354, (1) l. of table. Tobacco half-morocco, ribbed spine decorated with gilt fillets, mottled edges. Contemporary binding.
Precious first edition of one of Barbey d’Aurevilly’s most famous sulfurous books.
Vicaire, I, 305 ; Carteret, I, 110.
A copy from the first issue, with the misprints (p. 15 : vnos ; p. 25 : seulemen,t ; p. 121 : s’enrudir ; p. 124 : lui ; p. 186 : Hartfort ; p. 311 : lui et qu’il ; p. 322 : produite).
« An extremely rare and sought-after work, the edition having partly been destroyed after a trial ». (Carteret).
« Very sought-after, a great number of copies has an upper wrapper bearing the words ‘Second edition’. Their value is obviously depreciated ». (Clouzot 25).
From the first edition printed in 2200 copies, 480 copies that were being sewed were destroyed by the author and the editor after the legal proceedings of the public prosecutor’s department of the Seine.
Indeed convicted by the law because they evoked the intrusion of the Devil in human affairs, these short stories depict many surprising cases of moral perversion in which the Evil Spirit is embodied by a woman: « Le rideau cramoisi », « Le plus bel Amour de Don Juan », « Le bonheur dans le crime », « Le dessous de cartes d’une partie de whist », « A un diner d’athées », « La vengeance d’une femme ».
One of the most precious literary first editions from the 19th century.
A fine very fresh copy, without foxing, preserved in its strictly contemporary binding, a rare condition.