JOYCE, James. Work in Progress. Volume I. New York: Donald Friede, 1928.
2° (292 x 200mm). (Occasional light spotting or marking.) Original black cloth lettered in gilt on the upper board and spine, 20th-century cloth box, gilt morocco lettering-piece on upper panel. Provenance: James Joyce (post-mortem bookplate)--pencilled markings on p.77--Galerie La Hune, Paris (James Joyce (Paris: 1949), item 318, 2 copies of the work from Joyce's Paris library).
FIRST US EDITION, ONE OF BETWEEN 16 AND 20 COPIES PRINTED TO SECURE COPYRIGHT. FROM JOYCE'S PARIS LIBRARY. At the suggestion of Elliott Paul, transition's associate editor, Donald Friede published Work in Progress. Volume I in an edition of up to 20 copies, set from the text published in transition between April and November 1927, in order to secure US copyright; as the copyright was in Friede's name, Joyce suspected an attempt to cheat him of the copyright, and demanded that Friede transferred the copyright to Joyce, which Friede did in February 1927. Presumably, this was one of the copies sent to Joyce by Friede, with the copyright statement on the verso of the title-page provoked Joyce's anxieties. Following the German occupation of France in 1940, Joyce had fled to Zurich, leaving the bulk of his library in his Paris flat. Following Joyce's death in 1941, the landlord sold the contents of the flat at Hôtel Drouot in March 1941 to recoup some of the outstanding rent on the flat; Joyce's friend Paul Léon was able to buy some 70 of the material offered, and stored it in a friend's attic. Following Léon's death in a prison camp in 1942, the material remained in storage until 1949, when it was re-discovered and its importance fully recognised. The books were exhibited and then sold by Galerie-Librairie La Hune in October and November 1949, and the engraved bookplate present in this volume was commissioned by Bernard Gheerbrandt from the artist Johnny Friedlaender. This fragment forms pp.3-216 of Finnegans Wake. Slocum and Cahoon Joyce A30.