"TRAVELLING AGAIN TODAY, BUT NOT TOWARD THE FLESHPOTS OF TORONTO THIS TIME…": FIRST EDITION OF THE DIARY OF SAMUEL MARCHBANKS
DAVIES, Robertson. The Diary of Samuel Marchbanks. Toronto: Clarke, Irwin, 1947. Octavo, original red cloth, original dust jacket. $350.
First book edition, second state, of the musings of Davies' uproariously funny fictional Canadian alter-ago, originally created for a column in Ontario's Petersborough Examiner.
Robertson Davies created the character of Samuel Marchbanks while working as editor of the Petersborough Examiner in Ontario in 1944. Undeniably funny and quintessentially Canadian, Samuel Marchbanks was an instant success. The Diary of Samuel Marchbanks, published in 1947, was the first book (of three) to publish the columns in book form so that they could reach a larger audience; the entire series was eventually published as The Papers of Samuel Marchbanks in 1985. "There should be no doubt: as the enduring claim of The Baltimore Sun to fame is H.L. Mencken, that of The Peterborough Examiner is the comparably distinguished gift of Marchbanks, a.k.a. Robertson Davies" (New York Times). First edition, second state, with cancel title page, as often.
Book fine, dust jacket extremely good with a bit of soiling, mild rubbing and toning to extremities, and tape repair to verso.