Apr 08, 2021 - Sale 2563

Sale 2563 - Lot 125

Price Realized: $ 8,750
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 8,000 - $ 12,000
Sterne, Laurence (1713-1768)
The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman.

I-II: [York]: [Printed by Ann Ward], 1760. III & IV: London: for R. & J. Dodsley, 1761. V-VI: London: T. Becket & P.A. Dehondt, 1762. VII-VIII: London: T. Becket & P.A. Dehondt, 1765. London: T. Becket & P.A. Dehondt, 1767.

First edition, nine small octavo volumes; volumes V, VII, and IX signed by the author, "L. Sterne," at the head of the opening chapter; first volume with black page; volume III with engraved frontispiece; marbled leaf present in volume IV; half-titles present in volumes IV, V, VI, and IX; volumes, I, II, III, VII, and IX expertly rebacked; volumes V and VIII with front board detached; ex libris Arthur M. Brown; Edward P. Borden; and Winston H. Hagen, with the gilt-tooled morocco book label of each inside the front boards of each volume; the set bound in uniform contemporary speckled calf, each spine with two labels; each volume housed in a separate chemise in a nine-chambered custom box, 6 1/4 x 3 1/2 in. (9)

A fine set of one of the greatest comic novels in the English language, Sterne's irreverence and humor fly in the of modern assumptions about the dry pedantry of 18th century writers and thinkers. Standing on the shoulders of Rabelais and Cervantes, the story is lively, self-aware, and especially enjoyably read in the first edition.

Ashley V page 204; Cross II page 268; Rothschild 1970; Tinker 1973.

Provenance: from the Stephen White Collection.