3 December 2010
DARWIN, Charles. The Expression of the Emotions in Man and Animals. London: John Murray, 1872.
8o (182 x 121 mm). (Title slightly foxed.) Original green cloth, gilt-lettered spine (skilful restoration to spine); quarter morocco folding case.
FIRST EDITION. PRESENTATION COPY, INSCRIBED BY DARWIN on the front flyleaf: "With the compliments of the Author and his best thanks." This is the first issue, but with Roman instead of Arabic numerals on the plates. "With this book Darwin founded the study of ethology (animal behaviour) and conveyance of information (communication theory) and made a major contribution to psychology" (DSB). Written as a rebuttal to the idea that the facial muscles of expression in humans were a special endowment, the work contains studies of facial and other types of expressions (sounds, erection of hair, etc) in man and mammals.
This copy was specially prepared for presentation by having its edges trimmed by the binder, resulting in a book shorter and narrower than the regular version, which measures 187 x 123 mm. The original cloth binding is also comparatively shorter, with the covers measuring 189 mm high. In the presentation version of the binding, the space on the spine between the lower edge of Darwin's name and upper edge of the word "London" measures 111 mm compared to the 116 mm of the regular version.
This was the only book by Darwin to be illustrated with photographs, and was one of the first books to feature heliotype plates. This copy has its plates numbered with Roman instead of Arabic numerals, contradicting Freeman's suggestion that the issue with the Arabic numerals was the first, as it is most probable that Darwin would have presented copies from the earlier printing. Freeman 1141. A FINE AND SCARCE PRESENTATION COPY.
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