New York: Wm. H. Wise & Company, 1930. Item #04318
The Best Edition of Shaw’s Works
Inscribed by Shaw to the Producer of Several of his Plays
SHAW, [George] Bernard. The Collected Works of Bernard Shaw. New York: Wm. H. Wise & Company, 1930-32.
Ayot St. Lawrence Edition. One of 1,790 numbered sets (this copy being No. 941). Inscribed in black ink on frontispiece portrait in first volume to film producer Gabriel Pascal "To Gabriel Pascal / G. Bernard Shaw"
Thirty octavo volumes (9 1/8 x 6 inches; 232 x 153 mm.). Each volume with a coppertone photogravure frontispiece and volume one with an additional illustration after the preface.
Publisher's quarter Irish linen over blue paper boards, spines with blue paper labels lettered in gilt, top edge gilt, others uncut. A few corners slightly bumped otherwise a near fine, partially uncut set.
"The American "Ayot St. Lawrence Edition" was printed from plates made from stereos of the English collected edition, with re-set prelims and signatures deleted. Title-pages are decorated with an engraved vignette of Shaw's Corner, in Ayot St. Lawrence…"
George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950), Irish dramatist, critic, and social reformer. “Political and economic socialism, a new religion of creative evolution, antivivisection, vegetarianism, and spelling reform were a few of his causes…[Shaw] began to write for the stage in 1885. With most of his early plays either banned by the censor or refused production, Shaw sought a reading audience with his first published collection, Plays Pleasant and Unpleasant (1898)…Shaw wrote his best plays prior to, during, and shortly after World War I. They include Man and Superman , John Bull’s Other Island (written  at the request of William Butler Yeats for the Irish Literary Theatre), Major Barbara , Fanny’s First Play (1912), Androcles and the Lion (1912), Pygmalion , Heartbreak House [written 1913, produced 1920], Back to Methuselah , and Saint Joan . He received the Nobel Prize in literature in 1925…Shaw wrote many essays on socialism, politics, and economics and one longer work, The Intelligent Woman’s Guide to Socialism and Capitalism (1928)” (Benét’s Reader’s Encyclopedia).
Gabriel Pascal (1894-1954) was a Hungarian-born film producer and director whose best known films were made in the United Kingdom. A follower of Meher Baba, Pascal was the first film producer to successfully bring the plays of George Bernard Shaw to the screen. His most successful production was Pygmalion, for which Pascal received an Academy Award nomination as its producer. Later adaptations of Shaw plays included Major Barbara (1941) and Caesar and Cleopatra (1945).
Ayot St Lawrence is a small village and civil parish in Hertfordshire, England, between Harpenden and Welwyn. There are several other Ayots in the area, including Ayot Green and Ayot St Peter. George Bernard Shaw lived in the village, at Shaw's Corner, from 1906 until his death in 1950; his ashes are scattered there. The house is open to the public as a National Trust property.