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    Sale 7590

    Valuable Manuscripts and Printed Books

    4 June 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 320

    WELLS, H.G. The Time Machine, an Invention. London: William Heinemann, 1895.

    Price Realised  


    WELLS, H.G. The Time Machine, an Invention. London: William Heinemann, 1895.

    8° (180 x 112mm). Half-title. Original buff buckram, upper cover lettered in purple and blocked with a sphinx, spine lettered in blue (spine slightly darkened), uncut.

    FIRST EDITION, FIRST ISSUE, PRESENTATION INSCRIPTION to: "M.C. Robbins from H.G. Wells" with a small sketch of a seated cat inscribed 'Cheeps' on front endpaper. Hammond B1; Wells 4: "The earliest known work of science fiction to be based on the idea of time travel".

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    Pre-Lot Text


    Herbert George ('H.G.') Wells (1866-1946) married his second wife, Amy Catherine, known as Jane, in 1895. She bore him two sons; the elder, George Philip ('Gip'), was born in 1901. As his changing inscriptions to her reveal, H.G.'s mother-in-law, Mrs. M.C. Robbins, known as Pinnie, became dear to him and their relationship soon passed from its formal beginnings. Gip Wells (1901-85) was educated at Oundle where he studied Russian. He went on to Cambridge and became a noted zoologist and comparative physiologist, elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1955. He married in 1927 his father's secretary, Marjorie Stewart Craig. She had taken over the role of secretary and general factotum as H.G.'s wife declined in health. The friend to both father and son, Samuel Solomonovich Kotelianskii (1882-1955) helped H.G. in his contacts with Russia, taught Gip Russian, and was nursed by Gip and Marjorie in his final years.