"AN IDEAL HUSBAND! OH, I DON'T THINK I SHOULD LIKE THAT": FIRST EDITION OF OSCAR WILDE'S IDEAL HUSBAND
WILDE, Oscar. An Ideal Husband. London: Leonard Smithers and Co., 1899. Octavo, original lavender cloth gilt, uncut. $4500.
Limited first edition, one of 1000 unnumbered copies, a very nice copy in original decorative cloth designed by Charles Shannon.
Wilde's play premiered in January 1895 to an audience that included the Prince of Wales, and was an immediate success. Four months later, Wilde was in disgrace following his arrest for soliciting homosexual acts and his name was removed from the play's marquee (similarly, it appears nowhere in this edition). The play closed shortly thereafter and did not appear in print until this first edition. Mason 385. Bookplate; owner ink signature.
Light foxing to endpapers and preliminaries; only very slight toning and spotting to spine cloth. A lovely, near-fine copy.