“A WHOLE WORLD OF WONDER LEFT UNEXPLOITED”
DOUGLAS, Norman. Birds and Beasts of the Greek Anthology. (Florence): Privately Printed, 1927. Octavo, original blue paper-covered boards, printed paper spine label, uncut and partially unopened, original dust jacket. $600.
Signed limited first edition, number 396 of 500 copies signed by Norman Douglas.
An often outrageous and always "crankily independent writer and traveler," Norman Douglas spent much of his life outside of England, living in Florence, Capri and the south of France (New York Times). Acclaimed for his 1917 novel South Wind, Douglas also developed a long association with the Florence publisher Pino Orioli, who published several of the writer's works in his 'Lungarno' series and is possibly best remembered for publishing the first edition of Lawrence's Lady Chatterly's Lover, printed only one year after the private printing of this signed limited edition. In Birds and Beasts, Douglas compiles a witty assemblage of myths, anecdotes, literary asides and the occasional recipe, such as one for an "appetizing ragout of wild boar… served [with] a single non-assertive vegetable," an account that echoes his close friendship with food writer Elizabeth David.
Interior fine, lightest rubbing to original about-fine boards; light edge-wear to scarce original dust jacket, near-fine.