Boston: Roberts Brothers [through 1871], 1870. First Edition thus. Decorative Cloth. Early printings, four parts in three volumes (as issued), the complete Author's Edition, with title pages dated as follows: Volume I (1870); Volume II (1871); Volume III (1871). otherwise light wear. Uniformly bound in publisher's emerald green cloth, spines stamped in gilt, beveled edges, top edges gilt, coated chocolate-brown end papers. Elegant owner's signature on first flyleaf of each volume, dated 1871; contemporary calling card laid in with message on verso: "Returning your book for which I am very greatly obligated to you." Small 8vo: ,430,; ,382,36,; ,401,pp. Minor bubbling on several covers (binding defect), pages of Volume I marginally toned, else a superb set, apparently unread and virtually pristine. Printed in editions of 500, 500, and 1000 copies, respectively. Pye 2b.3, 3b.2, 5b.1. Item #BB1877
A series of twenty-four tales, two for each month, with twelve from classical sources and twelve chiefly from medieval Latin, French, and Icelandic originals. In the mid-1860s, "Morris entered a vigorous new poetic phase which established him as one of the most popular poets of his period, on a par with Browning, Tennyson, and Swinburne. . . . The poem that made Morris famous, The Earthly Paradise, is a large, highly coloured, hugely energetic sequence of narrative poems, a Victorian reworking of Chaucer's Canterbury Tales. . . . The framework is the story of a band of late fourteenth-century Norsemen, fleeing the black death, setting sail in search of the reputed earthly paradise 'Where none grow old'. Failing to find it, they arrive at 'a nameless city in a nameless sea' where they are welcomed by the elders. . . . " (ODNB) N. B. With few exceptions (always identified), we only stock books in exceptional condition. 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.).