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Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Oscar Wilde Book: Reading Gaol

This is one of the 1898 printings of the first edition Oscar Wilde's poem, THE BALLAD OF READING GAOL, with C.3.3, Oscar Wilde's cell number while in jail identified as the author, and Wilde's name not appearing in the book. It was published by Leonard Smithers in London. This is one of 1000 copies printed. There were six printings of this book in 1898 with C.3.3. listed as the author. This has the year 1898 (in Roman numerals) on the title page and on the verso of the title page it is identified as the "Sixth Edition", meaning the sixth, and last, printing of the first edition, all identical, and all identifying C. 3.3. as the author. This book is in fine condition -- no markings throughout, the gilt lettering on the spine still clear and sharp, the binding tight, and the only wear on the four outer corners of the covers, and that minimal. This edition of Wilde's Ballad with only C.3.3.listed as the author is a must in any collection of Wilde's work, and, indeed, of turn-of-the century literature. The high bidder pays postage and insurance. Payment can be made with a check (cashier's or personal), a money order, or a credit card (via PayPal). Payment must be made within 10 days of the close of the auction.

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