Bradford Exchange just released an authentic reproduction of the suppressed first edition of “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”.
When “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” was published, illustrator John Tenniel was displeased with the printing of a.o. his illustrations. Lewis Carroll therefore decided to recall this first edition. Currently only 22 known copies remain, of which only 10 in their original bindings.
If you want to obtain such an original first-edition copy, it will cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars. To be able to offer the edition at an affordable price for everyone interested in studying it, Charles Winthrope & Sons has published a replica and made it available through Bradford Exchange.
Multiple original first edition copies were consulted to produce this first edition replica. The reproduction is true to the original bindings and plates in regards to the gilt stamping and fonts, which were significantly altered in later versions from R. Clay and Son. The page sizes are accurate. It also includes the quirks found only in the first edition, such as the black endpapers and gilt page edges*.
(*Note that according to Selwyn Goodacre, the original 1865 edition had no gilted edges. The 1866 edition and the ‘Appleton Alice’, published in the US, did have them, but this facsimile should not – which is a flaw.)
The issues that Carroll and Tenniel complained about (smudges, bleed-through on the pages and blotting on the illustrations) have been cleaned up, while preserving the original text as it was originally typeset.
More specifications of the book:
- Original red cloth cover;
- Front cover and spine blocked and lettered in gilt with illustrations front and back of Alice and the Cheshire Cat;
- All page edges gilt;
- Black endpapers;
- All 42 John Tenniel illustrations;
- First-edition, first-printing type-setting;
- The frontspiece illustration separated from the title page by a tissue guard;
- Replica of the bindery ticket from the original bindery inside the back cover.
I very much love my copy! It is beautiful and precious.
If you want one too: the book is available at the Bradford Exchange Press website.