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JAMES DEWEY WATSON (B. 1928)
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JAMES DEWEY WATSON (B. 1928)

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JAMES DEWEY WATSON (B. 1928)
The Double Helix. A Personal Account of the Discovery of the Structure of DNA. London: Lowe & Brydone for Weidenfield and Nicolson, 1968. 8° (214 x 140mm). Illustrations. Original boards, spine gilt, dustwrapper (extremities lightly rubbed and bumped, spine slightly leant). Provenance: Ashwoods, Sydney (bookseller's inkstamp on upper pastedown).

First edition, third impression. SIGNED BY WATSON, CRICK, WILKINS, AND GOSLING, AND ANNOTATED BY GOSLING, describing the roles that he, Maurice Wilkins, and Rosalind Franklin played in the discovery of DNA's structure. The title-page of the volume has the 1989 Nobel stamp commemorating the award of the prize to Watson, Crick and Wilkins affixed to it, and has been inscribed 'With best wishes Maurice Wilkins' and 'With best wishes Francis Crick' and signed 'James D. Watson' and 'Raymond Gosling'. It has been further signed by Wilkins (beneath his portrait opposite p. 18) and by Crick and Watson (beneath the photograph of them in front of the DNA model opposite p. 214), and annotated by Gosling. These annotations (which are signed 'Raymond Gosling' and dated '2003' or 'Sept. 2003') occur beneath 3 illustrations: (i) beneath the portrait of Rosalind Franklin opposite p. 70, 'She had wonderfully dark lustrous eyes. I found her very attractive as did everyone who worked with her. She had a strong personality and did not suffer fools gladly. Her powers of concentration were quite fierce and she could get done in a day what others people might have taken several to achieve'; (ii) beneath an X-ray photograph of crystalline DNA in the A form opposite p. 72, 'The pattern that "kick-started" the whole story. A multifibre (about 35) specimen made by Wilkins & myself and taken on a conventional Rayneax tube in the basement of King's College London. This pattern was the one shown by Maurice at the Naples meeting. The A form was obtained serependidously by my regulating the hydrogen flow into the camera by bubbling thru' water -- hence = 92 RH'; (iii) beneath an X-ray photograph of DNA in the B form opposite p. 169, 'As Rosalind's assistant I actually "took" this X-ray pattern. Since we were working closely together the overall strategy was Rosalind's. Therefore the importance attributed to some -- as to who "took" the photograph -- is inappropriate'.
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