BROWNING, Robert (1812-1889) -- TRELAWNY, Edward John (1792-1881). Recollections of the Last Days of Shelley and Byron. London: Edward Moxon, 1858.
8° (199 x 120mm). Lithographic frontispiece portrait of Shelley after Clint, lithographic portrait of the author, 2 woodcut plates. (First quire detached, frontispiece lightly spotted.) Uncut in original grey cloth (spine rubbed and faded, inner hinges split), morocco-backed brown cloth case. Provenance: Robert Browning (his signature on half-title; 6-line autograph note in pencil on front pastedown and a further 4-line pencil note in his hand on rear endpaper) -- R.W. Barret Browning, sold Sotheby's 7 May 1913, lot 1167, to Maggs for £3 15s. -- Ward E. Terry (according to typed note by Roderick Terry) -- Roderick Terry (engraved bookplate and loosely inserted typed note), sold in part III of his sale, American Art, New York, 15 February 1935, lot 44, for $75 (£15).
FIRST EDITION, BROWNING'S COPY. Browning's boyhood imagination was transformed by his reading of Shelley and Keats, so much so that he became a vegetarian after reading Queen Mab, and regarded two nightingales that sang in the gardens of Camberwell as the embodiment of the two poets (see M. Ward Robert Browning, I, 1968, p. 30). Although he later gave up the idol of his youth, he included a remarkable prose essay on Shelley in Men and Women (1855). His note on the front pastedown of Trelawny's biography records Peacock's remark that the best portrait of Shelley was by 'Antonio Leisman, Painter, in the Florentine Gallery ....' The rear endpaper is inscribed with the names of Italian localities mentioned in the book. Ashley V, 119.