“A SLY HIT, A HAPPY PUN, A HUMOROUS COMBINATION”
LAMB, Charles. Essays of Elia. London: Chapman & Hall, circa 1920. Octavo, contemporary full navy polished calf gilt, elaborately gilt-decorated spine, raised bands, tan morocco spine labels, marbled endpapers, top edge gilt. $450.
Verulam Club edition of Lamb’s essays— by turns witty, insightful, self-deprecating, and philosophical— with frontispiece portrait of Lamb, handsomely bound by Sangorski & Sutcliffe.
"The prose essays under the signature of Elia form the most delightful section amongst Lamb's works… They are carefully elaborated; yet never were works written in a higher defiance to the conventional pomp of style. A sly hit, a happy pun, a humorous combination, lets the light into the intricacies of the subject… [Lamb] gives an importance to every thing, and sheds a grace over all" (Allibone, 1050, 1049). "The first series of these popular Essays appeared in the London Magazine between August 1820 and October 1822; the second series, between May 1823 and August 1825" (Lowndes). The Verulam Club, under whose auspices this later edition was published, was named after Francis Bacon, Lord Verulam. See Ruff, 149-60. Lowndes, 1300.
Fine condition. A very handsome volume.