London: Chapman and Hall, 1891. Original royal blue cloth decorated in black.
First Edition of what is "generally considered the most stylistically opaque and tortured of his [Meredith's] novels" [Williams]. Victor Radnor, Nataly Dreighton and their daughter Nesta have been supremely happy for twenty years; but now that Nesta is of marriageable age, it is time she and her suitor know that Victor is in fact married to a much older woman -- whom he had married for money, but who ever since has not had the decency either to divorce him or to die. As usual with Meredith's novels, the comedy of this situation turns to tragedy.
In this set the front free endpaper versos bear Meredith ads (in some copies they are blank -- priority uncertain). It is a bright, close-to-fine set (a touch of bubbling of the cloth near the top of one front cover, very minor rubbing at the corners). This is not a scarce book, but truly fine copies are difficult to find. Collie XIII; Sadleir 1700c; Carter p. 141. Item #15325