Copenhague, Bianco & Schneider for C.A. Reitzel, 1842-1844-1837.
3 parts in 1 volume 16mo [126 x 77 mm], VIII pp. with the general title, the table and the preface (« Til de aeldre Laesere »), (2) ff., 61 pp., (1) f. of table, pp. 3 to 76 (without the half-title in this part), (1) f., 60 pp. and (1) f. Bound in red shagreen, flat spine. Some foxing.
One of the few copies of the compilation that gathers together for the first time 9 of Andersen’s most important tales.
The first pamphlet contains 4 tales in the second issue: “The Tinder box”, “Little Claus and Big Claus”, “The Princess on the Pea” and “Little Ida’s Flowers”. The second part contains the second issue of 3 tales: “Thumbelina”, “The Naughty Boy” and “The Travelling Companion”. The third part presents the first issue of 2 of the most famous tales by Andersen: “The Little Mermaid” and “The Emperor’s New Clothes”.
His first fairy tales were only issued in c. 200 copies and are increasingly rare on the market.
The collector Jean Hersholt wrote in 1954 that « no copy with all its title-pages and tables of contents has ever been offered for sale by any dealer or at any auction sale”.
« The tales of Hans Christian Andersen are unique. Unlike Perrault’s and Grimm’s, his stories were original inventions […] The “Eventyr” are fairy tales of supernatural creatures and fantastic happenings. […] Over and above their intrinsic merit Andersen’s stories signalized a new and fundamentally different approach to the writing of books for children. Mawkishness, didacticism, and moral proselytizing were totally abjured and he was the harbinger of a new era in this genre” (Printing and the Mind of Man, n°299).
Hans Christian Andersen (1805-1875) is a Danish writer who personifies the popular Nordic genius.
This rare set contains the first printing of two of his most important tales: The Little Mermaid and The Emperor’s New Clothes.