London: Chatto & Windus, 1925. First Edition. Hardcover. Parts Three and Four (complete in two volumes) of this masterpiece of modernity, "a milestone in the study of human consciousness and a revolution in the history of prose writing." (Literary Encyclopedia) Translated from the original French by C. K. Scott Moncrieff. Crown 8vo (188 x 128mm): ,428; ,395,pp. Publisher's slate blue cloth, spines lettered in gilt, top edges stained blue, fore- and bottom edges untrimmed. Engraved armorial book plate to front paste-downs of Charlotte Bostwick Lovett (1822-1900), Philadelphia philanthropist. Exceptional examples, tightly bound and clean throughout. The Modern Movement 23. Fine. Item #BB1723
First Printing in English (not to be confused with the more common Phoenix Library edition published by Chatto & Windus in 1929). Written over more than a decade and considerably altered by the outbreak of the First World War and its author’s tragic experience of love and loss, À la recherche du temps perdu "is a work of formidable complexity, both in its radically new conception of time and narrative and in its penetrating analysis of history, man and society. . . . The novel’s seven volumes narrate the Narrator’s long gestation of a novel whose undertaking he continuously defers for the sake of more pressing preoccupations, until, threatened by old age and death, he will eventually heed his calling. . . . In the course of this journey, which the Narrator follows from childhood to mature age, there emerges one of the most extraordinary portraits of French society from the Third Republic to the early 1920s, and an exploration of the human mind whose perceptiveness, subtlety and disturbing honesty remain unmatched to the present day." (Literary Encyclopedia) "Proust's great novel À la recherché du temps perdu is something that happens once in a hundred years . . . He combined tragic poetical insight with the gift of creating comic characters in the round, like Shakespeare." (Modern Movement) Or, as per Joseph Conrad, "I don't think there has ever been in the whole of literature such an example of the power of analysis." N. B. With few exceptions (always identified), we only stock books in exceptional condition, carefully preserved in archival, removable polypropylene sleeves. All orders are packaged with care and posted promptly. Satisfaction guaranteed. (Fine Editions Ltd is a member of the Independent Online Booksellers Association, and we subscribe to its codes of ethics.).