Memorials, and Other Papers... In Two Volumes.

Boston: Ticknor and Fields, 1856. First American edition. 2 volumes, 8vos, pale yellow endpapers, original brown cloth paneled and stamped in blind. This first U.S. edition prints Klosterheim in Vol. II, De Quincey's only novel. Presentation copy, inscribed by Nathaniel Hawthorne to his English friend Henry Arthur Bright on the front free endpaper of each volume: "H. A. Bright, / with regards of / Nath' Hawthorne". One of Hawthorne’s biographers, Brenda Wineapple, describes Hawthorne’s relationship to Bright: “In Liverpool, Hawthorne gained a reputation for refusing invitations although he did develop a close friendship with Henry Arthur Bright, the precocious twenty-two year-old who’d met the author in Concord in the fall of 1852. Then, Hawthorne had hardly talked to him, but once in Liverpool he was grateful for his company and all his kindnesses, great and small. “Bright was the illumination of my dusky little apartment, as often as he made his appearance there!” Hawthorne would write (in Our Old Home). Bright took Hawthorne to the theater, accompanied him on his rambles, brought him magazines, oddments, and gossip, and conveyed to Sophia invitations to country houses. She responded gratefully, sprinkling him with adjectives: “interesting, sincere, earnest, independent, warm and generous hearted; not at all dogmatic, and with ready answers. He liked pre-Raphaelite poetry, Balzac, and flowers, and though he wrote an occasional piece for the Westminster Review – later for the Examiner and Athenaeum – Bright had no pretensions to a literary career. Instead he was the cream of the Liverpool merchant class, educated at Trinity, a Liberal, A Unitarian, and in 1857 a partner in the family shipping business, Gibbs, Bright, & Company. He was also a humanitarian. . . . Buffering the consul from Liverpool society, Bright looked to Hawthorne as to a father, and Hawthorne responded, tenderly cuffing him when [in 1854] he wrote a milk-warm review of De Quincey, that “poor old man of genius,” Hawthorne cried in sympathy, “to whom the world is in arrears for half-a-century’s revenue of fame!” Bright hadn’t served the old man at all. “You examine his title-deeds, find them authentic, and send him away with the benefaction of half-a- crown!”” – Brenda Wineapple. Hawthorne: A Life. N. Y: Alfred A. Knopf, 2003, pp. 276-277. Spines of both volumes skillfully restored at head and tail, gilt lettering on spine refreshed, some light mottling or discoloration to endpapers, otherwise a fine copy, otherwise a fine copy. Item #30776

Price: $17,500.00