Lorna Doone: A Romance of Exmoor; In Three Volumes.

First Edition
with an Autograph Letter Signed by the Author

BLACKMORE, R.D. Lorna Doone: A Romance of Exmoor. In Three Volumes. London: Sampson Low, Son, & Marston, 1869.

First edition. Apparently one of only 500 copies printed. Three small octavo volumes (7 1/8 x 4 11/16 inches; 181 x 119 mm.). vi, 332; iv, 340; iv, 342 pp. Bound without the preliminary blank leaf in Volume I and the final blank leaf in Volume III, but with the sixteen-page publisher’s catalogue, dated March, 1869, at the end of Volume III.

Bound ca. 1960 by Bayntun-Rivière (stamp-signed in gilt on the front turn-in) in full red morocco. Covers with gilt double fillet border, spines panelled and lettered in gilt in compartments with five raised bands, board edges and turn-ins decoratively tooled in gilt, all edges gilt, marbled endpapers. Spines very slightly sunned. A few short, expertly repaired margin tears. Some occasional minor foxing or soiling. Bookplate of J. Hodges on front pastedown of each volume. Overall, an excellent copy.

Laid in is an Autograph Letter Signed from Blackmore to James Payn, Teddington, Decr. 3rd. 1877, thanking him for his assistance in the publishing of his works. One small octavo page on a folded sheet. “Being called suddenly from home, I had not time last week to thank you, for your letter, & to say that probably I owe to your kind offices the conquest of the Teutons. This success is all the more surprising in that the reviewers have (almost with one accord) set forth an onslaught on my poor book.” Small bookseller’s description affixed to the recto of the second leaf. (Erema: or My Father’s Sin was published by Smith, Elder & Co. in 1877.) Payn was a literary adviser for the publishers Smith, Elder & Company.

The Lorna Doone shortbread cookie was introduced by Nabisco in 1912. No one, even at Nabisco, is quite sure of exactly how the name was chosen. All that can be said is that R.D. Blackmore, a British novelist, was the author of a popular book titled 'Lorna Doone,' the lead character, Lorna Doone of course, was of Scottish heritage, and shortbread was considered Scottish. Hence, a shortbread cookie named Lorna Doone.

Sadleir 227. Wolff 536. Item #00726

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