The Strayed Reveller, and other Poems. By A.

London: B. Fellowes …1849

Small 8vo., pp. viii, 128; a very good copy in the original green fine-ribbed cloth, covers and spine stamped in blind, spine lettered in gilt.

£600

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First edition of Arnold’s first book, apart from the Rugby and Oxford prize poems Alaric at Rome and Cromwell. To conceal his authorship as ‘A.’ suggests a certain reticence about the volume, even though it contains a number of his finest early poems, including ‘The Forsaken Merman’. Only 500 copies were printed, but while it may have sold badly, the traditional statement that the book was ‘withdrawn from circulation before many copies were sold’ (W. F. Prideaux) cannot be true as copies were still advertised for sale in Empedocles on Etna in 1852.

Hayward 256; Tinker 128.

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