Presentation copy, in dust jacket
JOYCE, James (1882-1941). Dubliners. London: Grant Richards, 1914.

Presentation copy of the first edition, in the very scarce dust jacket. A fine literary association copy, inscribed by Joyce to his publisher Crosby Gaige: "To Crosby Gaige James Joyce Paris 25.V.28." This inscription dates to just five months after Gaige published Anna Livia Plurabelle, a section of Finnegans Wake, in a signed limited edition of 850 copies. Inscribed copies of Dubliners are very rare: ABPC/RBH record just 3 other copies at auction in over 80 years, this being the only example with a dust jacket. This is an excellent example of a rare survival.

On 28 November 1905 Joyce mailed the manuscript of Dubliners to Grant Richards, who accepted it for publication in February 1906 and announced it the following month in The First Catalogue of Books Published by Grant Richards. In April, however, objections from the printer halted production. Joyce wrote an angry letter to Richards on 5 May: "You tell me in conclusion that I am endangering my future and your reputation. I have shown you earlier in the letter the frivolity of the printer's objections and I do not see how the publication of Dubliners as it now stands in manuscript could possibly be considered an outrage on public morality..." (Herbert Gorman, James Joyce, pp.149). Although Joyce agreed to a few alterations, Richards soon abandoned his plans for Dubliners. Joyce offered the book to others, including Elkin Mathews and George Roberts at Maunsel. Maunsel printed an edition of 1,000 copies by July 1910 but this was destroyed by the printers because of objectionable passages. At the most, only a few sets of page proofs of this edition were retained by Joyce.

Joyce returned to Richards on 23 November 1914, committed to publishing the book as it was written, which by then had grown by two stories, "A Little Cloud" and "The Dead," the masterpiece with which the collection concludes. Joyce guaranteed the sale of 130 copies in Trieste. Richards agreed, signed a contract on 4 March 1914 and published the book on 15 June. 1,250 sets of sheets were printed, of which approximately 746 were bound in this edition. The remaining 504 sets were sold by Huebsch in New York. Slocum & Cahoon A8.

Octavo. Original red cloth, gilt-lettered on front cover and spine (text block cracked at p. 128); printed dust jacket (front spine panel fold, spine panel ends, and flap corners reinforced on verso, skilful repairs at ends of spine panel with top of letter "D" in title supplied in facsimile); dark green morocco clamshell case, spine decorated in gilt. Provenance: Crosby Gaige (presentation inscription) – Roger Rechler (his sale, Christie’s, New York, 11 October 2002, lot 174).
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