Terminal Essay to the Thousand And One Nights.BURTON, Sir Richard
London: For Private Circulation only. 1901.
Limited edition, 48 of 50 copies. 4to (225x204mm). pp. [iv, 57, , xxi, [1bl]. Purple roneo-copied text on "Excelsior" laid paper sheets, sewn into blue-green printed wrappers with paste-over cloth spine, as issued. Small chips eroded from top edges of front wrapper and first six leaves (not affecting text), some pale whitish staining near rear spine joint, slight signs of wear to covers due to much handling, previous owner's name in ink at top of front wrapper. Overall a good copy of a rare and ephemeral item.
This is one of the second set of fifty copies, in typewritten roneoed format, produced by Smithers after the original run of fifty was exhausted. When the first run of fifty ran out, Smithers had it reprinted by the cheapest and quickest process: typewritten sheets reproduced on a Roneo machine. The other possibility – that this is a concurrent Parisian printing done by Carrington (the display types on the title-page are French art-nouveau style of the late 1890s and early 1900s typically used in Carrington's publications), is a less likely supposition, particularly since Smithers, after his bankruptcy in 1900, was a frequent visitor to Paris wheeling and dealing in quick-money projects, often with Carrington and his erstwhile partner Nichols. It makes perfect sense that, having run out of credit with his London printers, on a trip to Paris he arranged with Carrington to have 50 copies run off there for sale back in London. So when the run was exhausted, rather than arrange a further print run with Carrington in Paris, he ran off a further 50 copies on the Roneo machine back in London.