Artemis to Actæon

London: Macmillan, 1909.


Hardcover. First English edition from American sheets with the title page a cancel. Cloth at the top of the spine repaired, some random light foxing else a very good copy lacking the rare dustwrapper. According to Garrison one of only 250 copies of the English edition. The American edition itself is quite uncommon, this edition many times more so. Inscribed by Wharton in an uncharacteristically light tone to her lifelong friend Daisy Chanler: "Dear Daisy, In lieu of a dreary book here's a silly one from yr. affte. Edith May 1909." The inscription is perhaps some indication of Wharton's self-consciousness about these poems as they were the direct expression of her passion for Morton Fullerton, with whom she was engaged in an ongoing affair. Chanler was one of Wharton's closest friends. Yale's Beinecke Library has over a hundred letters from Wharton to Chanler that span a 50-year period.

Item #1073

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Item #1073 Artemis to Actæon. Edith WHARTON.
Artemis to Actæon
Artemis to Actæon
Artemis to Actæon
Artemis to Actæon
Artemis to Actæon
Artemis to Actæon

Edith Wharton
birth name: Edith Newbold Jones
born: 1/24/1862
died: 8/11/1937
nationality: USA

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American author best known for her stories and novels about the upper-class society into which she was born. - Merriam-Webster's Encyclopedia of Literaturemore

Collecting tips:

Her first book, Verses (published by her parents when she was 16 in 1878) is a great rarity. If you find one, call me up, so we can begin negotiating about the location of the new house I'll be buying for you. However, if you are going to wait to find a copy before you find a place to live, you might as well pay for it yourself, as they don't turn up very often. She has three avidly sought after novels: Ethan Frome (1911), The House of Mirth (1905), and The Age of Innocence (1920), all of which will set you back if you have to have them in jacket (yes, they all came with jackets originally). Her first regularly published book, The Decoration of Houses (1897, co-written with architect Ogden Codman, Jr.) is something of a classic in its field, and the easily worn marbled paper-covered boards make it difficult to find in reasonably fine condition, although copies in middling condition turn up occasionally. Italian Villas and Their Gardens (1904) is prized not only by Wharton collectors, but also by fans of Maxfield Parrish, who contributed the illustrations. The book was reprinted several times, and fine copies of the first edition are getting scarce, but are still occasionally obtainable for a not-too-unreasonable price.

Email us to request a printed copy of our catalog of Edith Wharton Rare Books and First Editions (or download it via the link as a 3.51 MB pdf file).

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