New York: William S. Gottsberger, 1886. First American edition. First complete edition in English (following the abridged London edition of the same year) with all title-pages dated 1886 and with the proper Gottsberger imprint on versos. Six small octavo volumes (pages 6 3/16 x 4 7/16 inches; 157 x 114 mm); complete with all blanks and ads. Translated from a French edition by Clara Bell.
Original dark brown cloth decoratively stamped in black and gilt and with titles in gilt. Original brown-coated endpapers. Volume one recased, rear hinge splitting on final volume (and a contemporary owner's signature on the first blank of the same volume); otherwise a clean, fresh set. Most volumes with slight pushing to the spine ends.
The author’s epic novel of the Napoleonic Wars, which gives them a human face through the poignant impact they have on several interrelated characters. A story of love and tradition amidst a crumbling society and a radically changing world. A novel brimming with enlightenment and modern theories. Virginia Woolf wrote: “There remains the greatest of all novelists—for what else can we call the author of War and Peace? . . . Even in a translation we feel that we have been set on a mountain-top and had a telescope put into our hands. Everything is astonishingly clear and absolutely sharp.” Undoubtedly a masterpiece of world literature, and in our opinion, the greatest work from the Russian literary canon. Near Fine (Item #4908)