The Life and Extraordinary Adventiures of Vidocq (A Haycraft-Queen Cornerstone Title)
London: I. J. Chidley. 1st Edition. Full-Leather. Near Fine. Item #010008
No date but c.1840. Tall 8vo., iv(1)206pp, Beautiful early edition originally published in an English translation in four volumes in 1828-1829. This edition constitutes his memoir may have been the first of a planned four-volume edition but not completed. The conventional wisdom is that Vidocq wrote the first volume himself and the other three were ghost-written. Chidley did publish, in 1940, the first one-volume edition of the tales. Sometimes called the "Grandfather of the Detective Story", Vidocq was a French detective who drew from his experiences to write the stories. There are theories however that much if not all is entirely fictitious. Regardless, these stories were an immense influence on Edgar Allen Poe and those that followed. Bound in contemporary full polished brown speckled calf with gilt dentelles and borders on both boards and paste-downs. Titles in gilt upon maroon leather spine labels. Gilt decoration and borders in all other spine compartments. t.e.g. Publisher's original brown cloth complete with gilt-titled spine panel is in beautiful condition and bound in. Frontis illustration and dozens of in-text vignettes throughout. Square, tight and quite clean throughout with little or no toning or foxing. Perhaps a scarce spot here or there. Some rubbing and wear to hinges and spine panel. Still quite clean and fresh and remarkably well-preserved. Bookseller ticket for Harry R. Marks, NYC on the rear paste-down. A simply gorgeous collectable copy of scarce item and a true landmark in mystery and detective fiction. (Hubin, p. 407) (Encyclopedia of Mystery & Detection, p.403) (Haycraft, "Murder for Pleasure", p.7-8, 24-25, 29-30).