The Mysteries of Udolpho
[H.P. Lovecraft]. The Mysteries of Udolpho. A
Romance. By Ann Radcliffe. With an Introduction by D. Murray Rose.
H.P. Lovecraft’s Copy.
London: George Routledge and Sons, Limited. No Date . Re-Issue, First Published in 1794.
Octavo, original blue cloth decorated in white, brown and black on spine and front panel, gilt
titles. viii +  – 157 + 158 pp, two parts in one, separately paginated. Issued in the
publisher’s “Half-Forgotten Books” Series. Formerly, Howard Philips Lovecraft’s copy, with
his ink name and aquisition note “From George Willard Kirk, Esqr.” in his own hand on front
free endpaper along with his iconic “fanlight” bookplate on the front paste-down. Browning to
endpapers, old price of 1- ($1.00) in pencil on front endpaper, light rubbing and a touch of
soiling to the cloth, a very good, bright copy of an attractive book.
A seminal volume of early Gothic Fiction, the personal copy from the library of one of the
greatest writers of Supernatural and Weird Fiction ever. Considered to be the archetypal
Gothic novel, The Mysteries of Udolpho, originally published in 1794, follows the
fortunes of Emily St. Aubert, who suffers, among other misadventures, the death of her father,
supernatural terrors in a gloomy castle and the machinations of an Italian brigand. Lovecraft
wrote extensively about this work in his long essay Supernatural Horror In Literature
(originally published in 1927), where he states (in Part III: The Early Gothic Novel) : Mrs.
Radcliffe wrote six novels; The Castles of Athlin and Dunbayne (1789), A Sicilian Romance (1790),
The Romance of the Forest (1792), The Mysteries of Udolpho (1794), The Italian (1797), and Gaston
de Blondeville, composed in 1802 but first published posthumously in 1826. Of these Udolpho
is by far the most famous, and may be taken as a type of the early Gothic tale at its best… Udolpho will always be a classic.
This copy was gifted to HPL by George Willard Kirk (1898 – 1962). Kirk was a bookseller,
publisher, and good friend of HPL. See Joshi & Shultz, Lovecraft’s Library: A
Catalogue, Fourth Edition, Revised & Enlarged (2017), Item No. 787.
The Star Treader and Other Poems
The Star Treader and Other Poems by Clark Ashton Smith. San Francisco: A.M. Robertson. 1912. The First Edition of the Author’s First Book.
THE AUTHOR’S PERSONAL COPY, with numerous corrections and
additions by him throughout the text. Bound for the author in full brown morocco, heavily gilt,
the spine with raised bands, inner doublures. The binding is original, the book was specially bound
for the author. There is a binder’s name, “E. Pollock”, embossed in gilt on the lower inner
doublure. The condition is outstanding – remarkably so, considering that Smith lived in a
remote cabin in the Sierras with no electricity and with wood heat. The best copy in the world,
now housed in a beautiful white quarter-leather case designed & built by the noted bookbinder,
Gray Parrot. Completely unrestored. Stunning.
Impeccable provenance. This copy of The Star Treader was originally purchased from Clark
Ashton Smith Smith’s literary executor (and bookseller) Roy A. Squires in the 1950’s. It was
offered for sale by him in his LIST 75-3, on the occasion of the First World Fantasy Convention in
Providence, 1975. This book was item number 2 on that list, preceded by H.P. Lovecraft’s own copy
of THE SHUNNED HOUSE, bound for him in full leather by R.H. Barlow. Suffice to say, the best
copy in the world of the author’s first book.
Price: $ 22,500