5 December 2006
[AUSTEN, Jane (1775-1817)]. Pride and Prejudice: A Novel. London: T. Egerton, 1813.
3 volumes, 12o (172 x 103 mm). Half-titles. (Some occasional pale spotting, first gatherings in vols. I and III slightly sprung.) Contemporary half russia, marbled boards, smooth spines gilt-lettered and ruled (some minor wear at extremities); cloth slipcase. Provenance: DJW (engraved armorial bookplate); Michael Sadleir (book label, his sale Sotheby's, 17 November 1958, lot 12).
THE SADLEIR COPY OF THE FIRST EDITION. Originally titled First Impressions, Pride and Prejudice was written between October 1796 and August 1797 when Jane Austen was not yet twenty-one, the same age, in fact, as her fictional heroine Elizabeth Bennet. After an early rejection by the publisher Cadell, Austen's novel was finally bought by Egerton in 1812 for £110. It was published in late January 1813 in a small edition of approximately 1500 copies and sold for 18 shillings in boards. Gilson A3; Keynes 3; Sadleir I, 62b. A FINE COPY. (3)
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