• Fine Printed Books and Manuscr auction at Christies

    Sale 2227

    Fine Printed Books and Manuscripts Including Americana

    4 December 2009, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 6

    BROWNING, Elizabeth Barrett (1806-1861). Poems. London: Chapman & Hall, 1856.

    Price Realised  


    BROWNING, Elizabeth Barrett (1806-1861). Poems. London: Chapman & Hall, 1856.

    3 volumes, 12o. One leaf of publisher's advertisements bound at the end of volume 3. Volumes 1 and 2 bound in original purple cloth, volume 3 bound in original green cloth, covers blind-stamped, spines gilt-lettered (some rubbing and light wear at extremities, spines of volumes 1 and 2 lightly sunned); cloth folding case. Provenance: JOHN RUSKIN (presentation inscription from the author in first volume); illegible ownership signature on front free endpaper of volume 3.

    Fourth edition. A FINE PRESENTATION COPY, FROM BROWNING TO JOHN RUSKIN, inscribed by her on the front fly leaf of volume one: "To John Ruskin with grateful regard from EBB --1856 London." Ruskin was a great admirer of Elizabeth Browning's poetry and struck up a friendship with her and her husband in 1852. He thereafter saw the couple when they visited London and was a faithful correspondent when they were in Italy, alternately sending lavish praise and polite criticism for their works. Elizabeth's death on 29 June 1861 was a great loss to Ruskin, who wrote to Georgianna Burne-Jones on 20 July: "And there's Mrs. Browning gone, too, who was a friend, and such a one, too; but one must not think about oneself when talking of her, it is all the Earth's loss." This copy is a mixed set containing revisions, a new version of "Casa Guidi Windows," and three previously unpublished poems. Barnes EB10. (3)

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