WEIRD TALES, by E.T.W. Hoffmann; A. Lalauze - 1885 [Ltd Ed w/Etchings]
Weird Tales (2 vols)
by Ernst Theodor Wilhelm Hoffman
illustrated by Adolphe Lalauze
translated by J.T. Bealby
Two volumes, translated from the original German.
#44 of 50 printed in this Limited Edition, published by: John C. Nimmo, London. 1885.
Hardbacks are overall in GOOD++ condition.
- Overall very good interior, a little rough outside.
- Dark blue cloth over board exhibits commensurate wear and dirt.
- Cover edges are rough, with exposed board at bumped corners.
- Rounded and sunned spines have pasted title block which is faded and scuffed.
- Spine ends are crushed with small tears and chips.
- Bindings are secure with very little play.
- Portrait frontis is present, with barely-foxed tissue guard.
- Lalauze's illustrative plates by are in remarkable condition, lightly toned and scarce foxing with tissue guards intact.
- Volume 1 overall shows more wear than Volume 2.
- A few white scuffs to front covers and light scratches to back .
- Spine shows tear across tail end.
- Pencil mark at bottom right pastedown.
- Ex libris books feature an owner's bookplate on both front pastedowns.
- Pastedowns and endpapers are toned with moderate foxing.
- Interior is gently age-toned, exhibiting minimal signs of age and wear with scattered light foxing and few smudges.
- Deckled fore and foot edges are dusty with inevitable small bumps and chips.
- Inside pages are free of writing and intentional marks.
- Text block edges are untrimmed fore and foot, as typical for 19th C binding.
- Some page edges remain unopened, mostly at endpapers.
- Book may exhibit additional minor signs of age or wear.
332 and 399 pages, 6.25 X 9.5 inches.
Two volume anthology of novellas and short stories of supernatural and/or horror. This scarce VERY Limited edition was limited to just 50 printed for the American market with proof etchings on Whatman paper.
Volume 1 contains:
- "The Cremona Violin" - Krespel's daughter is too ill to use her talent
- "The Fermata"
- "Signor Formica"
- "The Sandman" - featuring Olympia the dancing doll
- "The Entail" - A castle is haunted by the ghost of a murderer
- "Arthur's Hall."
Volume 2 contains:
- "The Doge and Dogess"
- "Master Martin the Cooper" - A prophecy is fulfilled
- "Mademoiselle de Scudéri"
- "Gambler's Luck"
- "Master Johannes Wacht"
- "Biographical Notes" - an extensive bibliographic essay from the translator.
Adolphe Lalauze (1838-1906) was a prolific French etcher who made the illustrations for many books. He won various awards and was made a knight of the Legion of Honour. During his lifetime he was called "one of the most skillful original etchers of the modern French school". An 1889 book described him as an etcher with extreme facility who composed elegant vignettes and frontispieces. [wikipedia]
Ernst Theodor Amadeus Wilhelm Hoffman (1776 - 1822) was "a German writer, composer, caricaturist, and painter, mostly known for his stories in which supernatural characters reveal people’s hidden secrets." [germanculture//famous-germans] He is considered among the first writers to venture into the realm of weird and speculative fiction, including elements of horror and sinister characters.
Hoffmann's stories were very influential during the 19th century, and he is one of the major authors of the Romantic movement. One of his novellas--"The Nutcracker and the Mouse King"--was translated into the world renown ballet "The Nutcracker", while other stories directly inspired Coppélia (ballet) as well as Schumann's piano piece Kreisleriana and an opera by Jacques Offenbach. [Goodreads]
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