8vo (198 x 123mm), 3 volumes, first edition of the author's first published novel, half-titles, publisher's 32pp. catalogue dated June 1847 at the end of volume 1, without the extra advertisement leaf present in some copies (no priority), original dark greyish reddish brown vertically-ribbed cloth, covers decorated in blind with triple line border enclosing decorative trellis-like border, pale yellow endpapers, preserved in green cloth chemise and quarter green morocco slipcase, a few minor paper flaws, a few leaves slightly stained, other occasional spotting, some early repairs to joints, hinges slightly fragile or starting, repair to endpaper of volume 1, some edge-wear to covers
"M.E. Hindhaugh" and "P.S. Macling", ownership signatures on endpapers; Hugh Walpole, with his "Brackenburn" book-label, sale of his library, Part I, Christie, Manson & Woods Ltd., 28 May 1945, lot 23
There is an eleven-line note in blue ink by Walpole on the verso of the front free endpaper of volume 1 ("When at last, after | waiting so long, I | possessed you as | you first appeared | to the world I felt | as though Rochester | had given me a nod | of recognition. | Hugh Walpole | Brackenburn | Nov: 16 1938")
Smith 2; Sadleir 346; Ashley I, p.72; Wolff 826; Tinker 379; Grolier English 83; Parrish pp.87-8
A rare copy in the original cloth binding of the first edition of the author's finest novel, one of the most ground-breaking and enduring works of English Literature. Charlotte Brontë's heroine was something completely new in Victorian fiction: a woman confronting men on equal terms, telling her story with passion and honest feeling. The novel has been the inspiration for countless further literary works and stage and screen adaptations.
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