[In Two Volumes.] New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1902. Original light brown ("biscuit") sateen cloth.
First Edition of James's tragic novel about Milly Theale, a young American caught up in the social circles of London and Venice. The London edition (issued in only one volume) was published nine days later.
[THE WINGS OF THE DOVE] explores one of James's favourite themes: the cultural clash between naïve Americans and sophisticated, often decadent Europeans... Kate Croy is a Londoner who encourages her secret fiancé, Merton Densher, to woo and marry Milly Theale, a wealthy young American who is dying of a mysterious malady. Thus, Kate reasons, ... Merton will inherit her fortune, and Kate and Merton can marry and be rich... [Kuiper].
This is a near-fine set, with essentially no wear at all, and with very little of the cover soil and spine fading to which this light-colored sateen cloth is unfortunately so prone. In our experience the American edition is considerably scarcer than the English one, and we seldom see it in any better condition: we have never been able to offer a truly fine set. Supino 56.1.0; Edel & Laurence A56a. Item #14319