New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1921. Attwell, Mabel Lucie. First Edition. Hardcover. First U.S. edition with Attwell illustrations, quarto size, 193 pp. Very good. Item #23032509
Sir James Matthew Barrie (1860-1937) wrote numerous novels and plays for both children and adults, but he is best known for "Peter Pan", a hugely successful play set in the magical world of Neverland; the play has been performed many times and has been adapted in films and literary works.
This volume is the first edition published in the United States with illustrations by Mabel Lucie Attwell (1879-1964); it would be reprinted several times and the true first is now somewhat scarce in the marketplace. During Attwell's career she would illustrate well over thirty books, in addition to posters, postcard and greeting cards. "Her pictures of chubby, winsome children enjoyed a tremendoud vogue in magazines and books for the young; and her [work]...continued to be incredibly popular through the thirties and into the forties" (n.b., quote from "The Dictionary of 20th Century British Book Illustrators" by Alan Horne).
___DESCRIPTION: Bound in full green cloth over boards, the front board with a vigentte of Peter and Wendy beneath a tree with a house perched in its branches, two elf-like creatures and mushrooms at the ground at their feet, done in gilt, black, and light green with gilt lettering, gilt lettering on the spine, tissue-guarded frontis one of the twelve full-colour illustrations bound in throughout, title page with illustrated border, black-and-white in-text line drawing illustrations throughout; quarto size (9.75" by 7.5"), pagination: [i-ii] iii-viii, 1-185.
___CONDITION: A solid very good copy, the boards clean other than a few light, stray marks, the corners with minimal rubbing, a strong, square text block, the interior is clean and bright, and entirely free of prior owner markings; the corners gently bumped, the cloth with light overall rubbing and a few small tears, both hinges starting (boards still firmly attached); a near fine interior in a good plus binding, overall a very good copy of this classic story.
___CITATIONS: Baumgarten, Artist, p. 15; Horne, p. 79; note that the true first edition (with Attwell illustrations) has the date of "1921" on the title page, matching the date on the copyright page. Note also that this may be a subsequent early printing of the first edition (with Attwell illustrations) or a variant first printing, as Baumgarten calls for pictorial endpapers and this copy has plain endpapers.
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