Title: The life and opinions of Tristram Shandy, ...
Publisher: Printed for J. Davis ; T. Smith ; N. Taylor and W. Thomson, London.
Publication Date: 1782
Book Condition: Very Good
Edition: 5th or later EditionNew edition, nine volumes complete in three. xxiv, 286; 275; 204 pages. Three copper engraved frontispieces including a portrait of Sterne. Printed black page volume one, page 41. Original marbled page laid down, volume 1, page 270. Squiggly lines volume two, page 273-4. Corporal Trim's flourish volume three, page 155. Age toning and sporadic marginal browning. 11.5 x 18 cm. Contemporary lightly speckled tan calf. Spines in compartments with sunburst gilt motifs and floral cornerpieces, & vertically gilded bands (heads and tails of spines and corners slightly worn); Titles lettered in gilt on red morocco labels and volume numbers on red oval morocco inlay on green contrasting leather labels with floral cornerpieces (one of which has a loss to the right hand side of the red oval, not affecting the gilt tooled numeral). The very rare first edition was published from 1759 to 1767. Tristram Shandy, not content with being one of the funniest pieces of literature, pushes the limits of the novel form into typographic experimentation; Sterne employs the technique of excessive deferred narrative in which the story is constantly postponed by digressions (Diderot imitated this later in "Jacques the Fatalist") & certainly played an important part in the rise of the novel, alongside contemporaries Daniel Defoe and Samuel Richardson. In its importance in world literature, "Tristram Shandy" stands alongside "The Adventures of Don Quixote". ESTC T202061 -uncommon with this imprint, a copy is held at Vyne National Trust Library but not at the Sterne Trust. Seller Inventory # 5114