First Edition of Emily Dickinson's Second Collection of Poems
Second Series. Edited by Two of Her Friends, T. W. Higginson and Mabel Loomis Todd.
Item Number: 85348
Boston: Roberts Brothers, 1891.
First edition of Emily Dickinson’s second book of poetry, one of only 960 copies of the first printing. Octavo, original cloth, original gray cloth, top edge gilt. In near fine condition with a touch of rubbing. Housed in a custom cloth and chemise case.
Emily Dickinson published only 11 poems during her lifetime, but upon her death in 1886, her sister Lavinia discovered 1775 manuscript poems. Mabel Todd edited and published the three series of these poems until a quarrel between the Dickinson and Todd families led to a division of the manuscripts, preventing the further publication of complete and authoritative editions of Dickinson’s poetry until 70 years after her death (Wolff). Dickinson’s lyrics, “her letter to the world,” offer an account “of the life about her, of tiny ecstasies set in motion by mutations of the seasons or by home and garden incidents, of candid insights into her own states of consciousness, and of speculations on the timeless mysteries of love and death. Her mind was charged with paradox” (Hart, 201).