"VIOLENCE IS THE LAST REFUGE OF THE INCOMPETENT": FIRST EDITION, FIRST ISSUE OF EACH BOOK IN THE AUTHORS FOUNDATION TRILOGY; EACH VOLUME SIGNED BY ASIMOV
Foundation, Foundation and Empire, Second Foundation.
Item Number: 2496
New York: Gnome Press Publishers, 1951-1953.
First edition, first issues of “one of the most influential works of modern science fiction” (Chronology of American Literature). Volumes 1 and 2 are signed by Isaac Asimov, volume 3 is inscribed by him. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. Foundation (Currey priority A binding), publisher’s dark blue cloth with red titles to the spine. Near fine in a near fine first issue dust jacket with three titles advertised on the rear panel and two on the rear flap. First edition, first state (Currey binding A). Octavo. 247 pages. Foundation and Empire is the first issue red cloth with the publisher’s imprint on the spine measuring 2.2 cm. It is near fine in a near fine bright dust jacket. Second Foundation is lightly rubbed, else near fine in a near fine dust jacket. An exceptionally nice set, most rare signed and inscribed.
Foundation was originally a series of eight short stories published in Astounding Magazine between May 1942 and January 1950. According to Asimov, the premise was based on ideas set forth in Edward Gibbon's History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, and was invented spontaneously on his way to meet with editor John W. Campbell, with whom he developed the concept. "The first four stories were collected, along with a new story taking place before the others, in a single volume published by Gnome Press in 1951 as Foundation. The remainder of the stories were published in pairs by Gnome as Foundation and Empire (1952) and Second Foundation (1953), resulting in the "Foundation Trilogy", as the series was known for decades" (Halmad, Spectra). The Foundation Trilogy was given a Hugo Award for the "Best All-Time Series" in 1966.