2 June 2004
'STENDHAL' [i.e. Marie-Henri BEYLE] (1783-1842). De l'amour. Paris: Fain for P. Mongie l'ainé, 1822.
2 volumes, 12° (180 x 105mm). Volume II, leaf 1/6 (pp.11-12) a cancel. Accompanied by the ORIGINAL MANUSCRIPT CONTRACT FOR THE PUBLICATION OF DE L'AMOUR SIGNED BY BEYLE (one leaf written in brown ink, corrections and insertions; two repaired tears without loss). Uncut. (Some light spotting, occasional light browning, neat tear in one leaf.) Contemporary blue-grey (now dusty pink) wrappers lined with printer's waste, printed spine labels (slightly chipped at spine and corners); modern red morocco-backed chemises, pink marbled paper slipcase.
FIRST EDITION of Stendhal's analytical treatise on love, borne from his relationship with his muse in Italy, the unobtainable Metilde Dembowski. Although not a commercial success, De l'amour was Stendhal's own favourite. He considered it his chef d'oeuvre and continued to work on it until his death. The present copy is accompanied by the rediscovered original manuscript publication contract between Mongie and Stendhal for the novel. The document was published in A. Cordier's Comment a vécu Stendhal (1900), who stated that it had passed to Stendhal's cousin and executor, Romain Colomb, along with other papers. Subsequent publications cite Cordier only, without reference to the location of the manuscript itself (Oeuvres completes, ed. V. Del Litto, vol. 36, pp.254-55; L.R. Felberg, Stendhal et la question d'argent au cours de sa vie, 1975, pp.99-100). A VERY FRESH COPY.
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