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Mark Twain's Autobiography and First Romance

by Mark Twain

New York, NY:  Sheldon & Co, 1871

Hardback is overall in VERY GOOD condition.

  • Cover features the title in gilt with a blind stamped border.
  • Boards in overall good condition with some edgewear, shelfwear, and dirt. (See Photos).
  • Corners are bumped.
  • Spine is green with no text.
  • Binding is strong and secure.
  • Endpapers and feps have some moderate foxing as well as notes written in pencil. The rear fep has a 1/4 x 1/2 inch chip on the top corner. (See Photos).
  • Illustrations are clear with age toning, and scattered foxing.
  • Interior is gently age-toned, exhibits minimal signs of age and wear, and scattered light foxing.
  • Inside pages are free of writing and intentional marks.
  • Inside pages have scattered light to moderate foxing. (See Photos).
  • Text block edges have marks on the top edge. (See Photos).
  • Book may exhibit additional minor signs of age or wear.
  • AJ20191014

47 pages. 5 x 7.5 inches.

Mark Twain's (Burlesque) Autobiography and First Romance is an 1871 book by American author Mark Twain. Published by Sheldon & Co. in 1871, the book consists of two short stories: "A Burlesque Autobiography", which first appeared in Twain's Memoranda contributions to The Galaxy, and "First Romance", which originally appeared in The Express in 1870.

The book bears no relationship to Twain's actual life. The two short stories present fictional characters who are supposedly part of Twain's lineage. In the final passage, Twain develops the story to a point of crisis, and then abruptly ends the tale, saying: “ The truth is, I have got my hero (or heroine) into such a particularly close place, that I do not see how I am ever going to get him (or her) out of it again—and therefore I will wash my hands of the whole business, and leave that person to get out the best way that offers—or else stay there. I thought it was going to be easy enough to straighten out that little difficulty, but it looks different now. ”

With that, Twain's Autobiography ends.

The illustrations form an interesting aspect of this book. They have no relationship to the text of the book. Rather, they use cartoons illustrating the children's poem The House that Jack Built to lampoon the Erie Railroad Ring (the house) and its participants, Jay Gould, John T. Hoffman, and Jim Fisk. The book was not one of Twain's personal favorites. Two years after publication, he bought all of the printing plates of the book and destroyed them.

AS IS! Please see photos. More photos available upon request.

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