Wonderful Wizard of Oz, The; With Pictures by W.W. Denslow.

A Wonderful First Edition of the “Wizard of Oz”

BAUM, L. Frank. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. With pictures by W.W. Denslow. Chicago: Geo. M. Hill Co., 1900.

First edition, second state of the text and second state of the plates. With the following points: p. [2], the publisher’s advertisement is not enclosed in a box; p. 14, line 1 begins: “low wail of…”; p. 81, the fourth line from bottom has “pieces”; p. [227], line 1 begins: “While The Woodman…”; and the colophon on the rear pastedown is set in thirteen lines and is not enclosed in a box, with the initial letter in black; with broken type in the last line of p. 100 and p. 186. The verso of the title has the copyright notice. The plate facing p. 34 is in the second state, without the two dark blue blots on the moon, and the plate facing p. 92 is in the second state, without red shading on the horizon. Quarto (8 3/8 x 6 7/16 inches; 212 x 163 mm.). 259, [1, blank], [1], [1, blank] pp. Twenty-four inserted color plates, including the title, which is included in pagination.

Original light green cloth pictorially stamped and lettered in red and a darker green (variant C, with the publisher’s imprint at foot of spine in plain, unserifed type, stamped in red rather than green, and with the “C” of Co.” encircling the “o”). Color pictorial pastedown endpapers (the front pastedown printed in black and gray and the rear pastedown printed in black and red). Issued without free endpapers.

This copy inscribed "To my dear Lyman with a Merry Christmas greeting from Aunt Maud, 1901." The second state of the text was issued in 1900 and remained until 1903. Here, then, is one of the earliest examples of the second state text.

This is a remarkable copy, in absolutely fine condition, totally untouched… by far the finest example we have ever seen. Housed in a velvet lined, green cloth clamshell case.

“[Over] a century after this book’s first publication, few Americans are unfamiliar with the image of Dorothy being carried by a Kansas cyclone into the magical land of Oz, where she meets the scarecrow, the tin woodman, and the cowardly lion. Their adventures looking for the Emerald City and the wizard have become a permanent part of American popular culture. Baum’s work, originally self-published with striking illustrations by William Wallace Denslow, was an immediate success with children; its popularity now is largely based on the 1939 film, starring Judy Garland as Dorothy. In his introduction to the book, Baum argued that ‘the old-time fairy tale, having served for generations, may now be classed as ‘historical’…the time has come for a series of newer ‘wonder tales.’…Modern education includes morality, therefore the modern child needs only entertainment in its wonder-tales.…’ The Wonderful Wizard of Oz lays claim to a place among the turning points in the secularization of American children’s literature” (The New York Public Library’s Books of the Century).

Blanck, Peter Parley to Penrod, pp. 111-113. Greene and Hanff, pp. 25-27. Item #00967

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