"CONSIDERED A FORERUNNER OF AMERICAN FANTASY FICTION"
CABELL, James Branch. Jurgen. A Comedy of Justice. London: Golden Cockerel Press, 1949. Tall octavo, half maroon morocco and red cloth by Sangorski and Sutcliffe, with gilt-stamped pictorial front board, top edge gilt, others uncut. $450.
Limited edition, number 376 of 500 copies, of Cabell's most influential work, with sixteen engravings by John Buckland-Wright.
"In the realm of sophisticated, satirical fantasy and allegory this is perhaps the greatest book of modern times… The only greater satire than this book was its suppression by authorities who… only half understood what it was about" (Bennett, 217). This edition with the passage, in Chapter 32, describing Jurgen's trial for indecency (including Jurgen's succinct defense that "all the lewdness is in the insectival mind of him who itches to be calling these things by other names") — not included in the 1919 first edition but added by Cabell to the 1926 revised edition after his own obscenity trial for the book. "Considered a forerunner of American fantasy fiction, his work is applauded today by writers and artists including Neil Gaiman and Charles Vess… Gaiman's award-winning 1990s graphic novel series The Sandman as well as his novel American Gods… were influenced by Cabell's writing, particularly Cabell's Jurgen" (VCU Libraries Research Guides). Cock-A-Hoop 182. Small dealer label to rear pastedown.
Spine lightly sunned. An attractive copy.