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Signed & Inscribed19th Century LiteratureModern Literature

Signed & Inscribed19th Century LiteratureModern Literature

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London Chatto & Windus 1890 
First Edition - English. Historic presentation copy inscribed and signed by the author, Robert Louis Stevenson, to his stepdaughter, Isobel Osbourne Strong. Inscribed on the half-title: “Belle from R.L.S., Sydney, Feb 17th 1891.” Original gilt-stamped blue cloth. Endpapers have some darkening, else a fine copy. The book is a remarkable collection of his ballads of the fanciful and weird set in both the South Seas and in Scotland ending with the moving “Christmas At Sea.” This presentation copy carries with it a very significant background, for the book was presented at the decisive moment in the relationship of R.L.S., and his stepdaughter. Stevenson had traveled alone to Sydney, Australia in February 1891 in large part to persuade Belle to give up her desire to remain in Australia and provide for herself and her son through some employment prospects. Stevenson, however, counted them as his family and she recalled that he “talked with such kindness, such understanding, that every last bit of resentment I held toward him melted away, and I felt myself to be truly his loving daughter.” Indeed, Isobel Strong would live in Stevenson's island home, Vailima, in Samoa, becoming his amanuensis, biographical adjunct and lifelong (she passed away in 1953 at age ninety-five) keeper of the flame. It is not a stretch that this very copy is the literary commemoration of that relationship changing occasion. Enclosed in a handsome gilt-stamped blue morocco and cloth slipcase. 
Price: 17500.00 USD
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