Travels Into Several Remote Nations of the World

In Four Parts. By Lemuel Gulliver, First Surgeon and then a Captain of Several Ships.

SWIFT, Jonathan

THE BERLAND COPY

SWIFT, Jonathan Travels Into Several Remote Nations of the World In Four Parts. By Lemuel Gulliver, First Surgeon and then a Captain of Several Ships.

Benj. Motte, 1726.

First edition, first printing (i.e. Teerink A). Frontispiece portrait of Gulliver in the very rare first state, with the inscription beneath the portrait rather than around it. Original trade binding of panelled calf, morocco title labels to spines lettered and numbered in gilt, edges speckled red. Engraved frontispiece, four maps, two plans and head and tail pieces. A very good set with neat repairs to to the spine ends of each volume and upper corners of vol I. Paper repair to the front endpaper and gutter of frontispiece vol I, occasional light spotting to the text but a generally fresh well margined copy. Housed in a scarlet full morocco box with chemise.

The author's masterpiece and a landmark in the early development of the novel. Swift wrote Gulliver in stages from 1714. It is unclear whether it began life as an innocent fictional travel account, but certainly by completion it had developed into a tour de force of political satire. As a consequence, Swift insisted on publishing the novel anonymously through the London publisher Benjamin Motte, who used five printing houses to rush the work into print and to counter piracy.
The success of the work was instant and the first printing sold out within a week (quickly to be followed by two further printings in 1726). Only the very earliest copies of the first printing were issued with this frontispiece, which was quickly replaced with a redesigned one to allow a Latin motto to take the place of the inscription beneath the portrait.
Copies with the first state portrait have always been rare: anecdotally, about one in every 25 first printings in commerce. Indeed only ten copies have been sold at auction in the last 100 years. Equally sought are copies in contemporary bindings, so the combination here makes for a most desirable copy of this important work.

PROVENANCE: John Fleming (bookseller) sold in 1973 to; Abel Berland (noted book collector, bookplate to front pastedown) sold at his sale in 2001; Private collection.

Teerink 290; PMM 185

Stock ID: 41784

£135,000.00

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