London: Methuen, 1907. First Edition. Decorative Cloth. First Impression (one of only 2500 copies), First Issue ("be be" on final line of p. 117, six additional text error as noted by Smith, and publisher's catalogue dated September 1907), of the "earliest and best novel portraying the character and fate of a double agent." (Barzun & Taylor) Crown 8vo: ,442,,40pp. Publisher's ruby-red bold-ribbed cloth, spine lettered and ornamented in gold, fore- and bottom edges untrimmed; bookplate of A. Beresford Ryley to front paste down. Foxing to front blank, small gutter stain (not affecting text) to pp. 212-17, faint rubbing to spine edges, else an excellent example and scarce such. Keating 73-74. Wise 17. Connolly 15. ("Conrad's greatest heroine.") Barzun & Taylor 903. Haycraft-Queen cornerstone. Ehrsam, p. 304. Smith 13. Near Fine+. Item #BB1765
A tale of anarchists in late nineteenth-century London, which originally appeared serially in Ridgeway’s Weekly. "The plot centres on an attempt to bomb the London Observatory in Greenwich, inspired by a real incident of 1894. The chosen site is of great significance, in terms of science, empire and fame. In 1884, the Prime Meridian Conference established Greenwich as the point from which time would be measured. Though much of the rest of the world was initially resistant, and time was not centred on Greenwich by Europe and America until the International Conference on Time in Paris in 1912, the Prime Meridian Conference also divided the world into twenty-four zones separated by an hour’s difference, and enshrined an exact moment at which the universal space-time day would begin." (Literary Encyclopedia) N. B. With few exceptions (always identified), we only stock books in exceptional condition, with dust jackets 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.).