FIRST EDITION, FIRST ISSUE OF CHARLES DARWIN'S THE DESCENT OF MAN; From the library of Egyptologist Percy E. Newberry
The Descent of Man.
Item Number: 65057
London: John Murray, 1871.
First edition, first issue of both volumes (with “transmitted” the first word on p. 297 in the first volume; in the second, the printer’s note on the verso of the half-title, errata on title verso, and the postscript leaf after p. viii. Both volumes have the January ads). Octavo, two volumes, original green cloth. In good condition, rebacked, marbled board slipcase. Publisher’s embossed presentation stamp on titles; contemporary signature of Neville Goodman on half-titles; bookplates of the Egyptologist Percy E. Newberry. Newberry served on the Tutankhamun excavation team for several seasons. His speciality was the botanical specimens from the tomb, on which he would briefly report in the second volume of Carter’s The Tomb of Tutankhamen. on the front pastedowns. With noted provenance.
The book, in its first edition, contains two parts, the descent of man itself, and selection in relation to sex. The word 'evolution' occurs [Volume I, p. 2] for the first time in any of Darwin's works" (Freeman, 128-29). It also contains Darwin's important (and then controversial) statement that the extinct ancestors of Homo Sapiens would have been classified among the primates. "One of the ten most significant books ever written" (Sigmund Freud). Freeman 937; Garrison-Morton 170; Printing and the Mind of Man 169; Rieber 121.