[a handsome copy] With Numerous Illustrations. Boston: James R. Osgood and Company, 1875. Original blue cloth pictorially decorated in black and gilt, beveled.
First American fully-illustrated edition, from the sheets of the first British edition. These four tales include three that are among Jules Verne's earliest: "A Drama in the Air" (appeared in a periodical in 1851, his second story), "Master Zacharius" (1854, his fourth), and "A Winter amid the Ice" (1855, his fifth); "Dr. Ox's Experiment" itself did not appear until 1872. (Also included is "Ascent of Mont Blanc" by his brother Paul Verne.) Osgood had published the first edition in English in mid-1874, in a small unillustrated volume. William F. Gill of Boston published the first American (somewhat-) illustrated edition, dated 1874, under the title FROM THE CLOUDS TO THE MOUNTAINS. Sampson Low's London edition came out in late 1874, and then this copiously-illustrated Osgood edition came out in mid-1875, priced at a hefty $3.00.
There are some great tales here...
Doctor Ox and his assistant Ygene come to the small quiet community of Quiquendone located in Flanders. He promises to light the town with a network of oxyhydric gas pipes. During the construction of the network, the quiet community becomes quite excitable, to the point where they are ready to go to war against a neighboring community. But what is the cause of this change in the nature of the good people of Quiquendone? Perhaps it is something in the air...
As a clockmaker [Master Zacharius] in Geneva Switzerland begins dying, all of the time-pieces that he has crafted begin failing, as though a part of his soul became a part of each of them. Soon only one of his time-pieces remains functional, and for the clockmaker to gain possession of it, he must give his daughter's hand in marriage to a man who works for the devil himself. [Kytasaari]
The front cover shows Master Zacharius raising the trap door in the floor of his workshop, and the spine shows the earthbound "madman" who had fallen from the balloon in "A Drama in the Air."
This is a remarkably bright copy, just about fine (just the slightest of wear at the spine ends). In our experience this Osgood illustrated edition is none too common (considerably scarcer than the earlier less-illustrated American editions noted above); we've had only three other copies, green, blue, and terra-cotta. Taves & Michaluk V012; Myers 16. Item #15090