London: Macmillan and Co., 1878. Original dark blue-green cloth.
First Edition, which consisted of only 1,250 copies (there was no American edition of these pieces until 1964). These essays about Baudelaire, Balzac, Flaubert, Mérimée, Sand and others are very "early James," initially published in periodicals between 1875 and 1877.
This copy is in smooth linen-grain cloth, with the "Macmillan and Co." spine imprint measuring 1-3/8 inches across; some copies are in smooth bead-grain cloth, with the imprint narrower (no known priority). This is a bright copy, fine except for one tiny nick at the head of the spine. Supino 5.2.0; Edel & Laurence A5a. Item #14326