The Works of Herman Melville; Finely Bound

  • The Works of Herman Melville.
  • The Works of Herman Melville.

The Works of Herman Melville.

Item Number: 5828

London: Constable and Company, 1923-24.

The Complete Works of Herman Melville. Octavo, 16 volumes bound in three quarters blue morocco, raised bands, gilt titles and tooling to the spine. The Standard edition, limited  to 750 numbered sets and includes the first printing of Billy Budd, in volume 13. Volume 16 includes the first appearance of a number of Herman Melville’s poems. In very good to near fine condition with a few volumes rebacked. An attractive set.

Herman Melville was an American novelist, short story writer, and poet from the American Renaissance period. Most of his writings were published between 1846 and 1857 and is best known for his sea adventure Typee (1846) and his whaling novel Moby-Dick (1851), he was almost forgotten during the last thirty years of his life. His writing draws on his experience at sea as a sailor, exploration of literature and philosophy, and engagement in the contradictions of American society in a period of rapid change. The main characteristic of his style is probably pervasive allusion, reflecting his written sources. Melville's way of adapting what he read for his own new purposes, scholar Stanley T. Williams wrote, "was a transforming power comparable to Shakespeare's."