The Strange Gentleman; a Comic Burletta, in two acts. By "Boz." First performed at the St. James's Theatre, on Thursday, September 29, 1836. London: Chapman and Hall, 1837
8vo (170 x 100mm.), first edition, engraved frontispiece illustration by Hablot K. Browne ("Phiz"), rebound in crushed red morocco gilt by Wood, covers with floral cornerpieces, very light spotting
FIRST EDITION, WITH THE RARE FRONTISPIECE, OF THE "SCARCEST AND THE COSTLIEST OF ALL DICKENS PAMPHLETS" (Eckel). The Strange Gentleman, the first of the author's plays to be performed publicly, was based on "The Winglebury Duel" in Sketches by Boz, and was a vehicle for the author's friend, the comic actor John Pritt Harley (see lot 118 for a presentation copy to Harley). The author's text was heavily revised during rehearsals and songs added to properly transform it into a "burletta". Opening on 29 September at St. James's Theatre, the play was very well received and reviewed, running for sixty nights.
Eckel p.154; Gimbel A26
The American lawyer and statesman Frederick W. Lehmann, founder of the St. Louis Art Museum (1853–1931), sale at the American Art Association, 2 December 1930; [sold for $2310 to:] Comte Alain de Suzannet (acquisition recorded in Suzannet's annotated catalogue of his 1934 Lausanne catalogue), bookplate; sale of his collection at Sotheby's, 22 November 1971, lot 37
Condition is described in the main body of the cataloguing, where appropriate.
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