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Vintage book LOVELY French medieval romantic knights tale translated to English by Andrew Lang, "Aucassin & Nicolete" one of just 925 copies

Vintage book LOVELY French medieval romantic knights tale translated to English by Andrew Lang, "Aucassin & Nicolete" one of just 925 copies

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Overview

  • Vintage item from the 1800s
  • Favorited by: 11 people
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Description

There is no other book like this one.

This book is so special I had to put a picture of the publisher's note in the photos, because it just highlights and underlines and bolds and italicizes and makes all-capitals just how special this copy is. I'll quote it in full here, too:

"Note. - The present edition is a direct reprint of that very scarce little volume: Aucassin & Nicolete Done into English by Andrew Lang, London: 1887. Published by David Nutt in the Strand. (Cap 8vo. Pp. xx: 70.): dedicated by its translator to the Hon. James Russell Lowell. The Translation was made in June, and the book printed at the Chiswick Press, in November, 1887.
The original etched title-page, (with a curious error in its date,) and three woodcut designs, by Jacomb Hood, are also reproduced in this Old World Edition.
But 550 copies, (500 only for sale) were issued on Japan Vellum, in wrappers, also 60 large paper copies.
Prices at recent book sales for small paper copies have been from four to five guineas."

Isn't that fantastic? This book is a fourth print of that one, and is one of 925 copies ever made sale, printed on Van Gellum paper, and though it does not come with a wrapper it is such a contained copy its ends fold in to protect the outer page-edges, almost like a little booklet that folds to create a box of its own, a self-protecting book curled in to protect its special contents. Still it is just a book, no folio case, and a slim one at that, but one that has somehow managed to last this long from the 1800s, with such a beautiful title design (reminiscent of illuminated manuscripts of old) on the front cover, and an even more beautiful frontispiece drawing inside of the two main characters. The fact it is a facsimile of the original, which was even more scarce at the time with just 500 copies for sale, is fascinating to me, because that means it is the same as the original but made available at least to some people for their own because of its popularity, yet still confined to 925 copies! It is like it wanted to be owned and cherished by readers as they likely would such a wonderful, beautiful, legendary text, but only a select few. Strange and intriguing, no?

The fact of this copy being so rare is not the only reason one should buy it, however, as knowing the story and its importance and wondrousness (yes it's a word I checked! and it's the perfect word to use here!) is the true reason above all that one should own a copy of this work--and especially this copy. It should be noted that Andrew Lang, the man we all know today as the FAMOUS author of the Fairy Books, or The Rainbow Fairy Books (if you don't know of them you should look them up, they are extremely expensive and highly collectible and wanted throughout the book collecting community, and such amazing works of literary art I can't even talk about them without envy of those who own copies--I have one for sale, in fact, the Violet Fairy Book, you should take a look!) translated this work from its original "anonymous medieval French chantefable," which is described as a combination of prose and verse (and literally translates to a "sung story").

Translating such a famous work is a hard thing to do, but of course the master of poetry and verse could do it and do it incredibly well, so much so that this work is renown today and was renown even more so in its own time! The story of Aucassin & Nicolete might never have been known to English-speaking audiences without the talents and time and wonderful skill of word that Andrew Lang exhibited all his lifetime, so we have him to thank, as well as the anonymous creator of this magical piece.

The story goes thus: "Aucassin et Nicolete" are two lovers, Aucassin the son of a Count, and Nicolete a Saracen Maiden. Nicolete has been sold to a "Viscount," baptized and adopted by him from birth, and as her father he renounced his knighthood for her. Because of this decision the grandfather orders Nicolete sent away, but she is instead locked by her "loving" but misguided father in a tower. Aucassin, meanwhile, is imprisoned by his own father the Count to prevent him from running to be with his love and help her escape, but instead it is Nicolete who escapes and runs to him. The lovers are tragically separated by the cell walls, but their love remains, and Nicolete tries to build a life while waiting for Aucassin to be freed to meet her. I won't give anything else away, but the story goes on even more dramatically and excitingly from there, and there truly is the sense of the legends and poems of King Arthur and his knights that floods the narrative from beginning to end. This French tale measures up to them all, even Le Morte D'Arthur, one of my own favorites, as it has everything you could look for in a tale from medieval times: romance, adventure, tragedy and magical lands where the compelling and foreign world of medieval times with knights who live by codes of honor and damsels in distress and all that is shining out from every page.

I can't recommend this book enough, and I would keep it but I can't keep every book that I love, and would love to help this book find a home and share the story that is not so well known today with someone who will fall for it the same way I did.

And here's the straight information you may be looking for:

-Full title: Aucassin & Nicolete, Done into English by Andrew Lang
-Original Author: Anonymous
-Original Language: French
-Translator/Writer: Andrew Lang
-Language: English
-Format: Hardcover but light, made seemingly of paper just hard enough to be considered "hardcover" and not a softcover, Old World Edition (facsimile edition, 4th print) one of just 925 copies. Maroon design illustrated manuscript-style title font on front, nothing on thin spine, pages uncut, inside frontispiece black and white protected from title page by thin wax sheet.
-Condition: Unbelievable for an old book, the book has stains of age on the cover but inside is preserved in such an astonishing way that it is truly impressive.
-Publisher: Thomas B Mosher, Portland Maine
-Copyright: Unstated. Research indicates Andrew Lang 1899
-Date published: 1899
-Provenance: I found this amazing, amazing book in a rare bookstore I frequent and though it was one of the more expensive ones, and I passed over it a few times because I wanted to save my money, it called to me every time I went into the shop and I finally decided to just go ahead and purchase it. :) This was in Connecticut along the coast just last month March 2017.
-Pricing: This book's rarity and specialness is evident in my description above, and that determined the price, as well as the condition of the book being so well preserved, and its being an exact facsimile and only one of 925 copies printed on the Van Gellum paper, too.
There is no other book like this one.

This book is so special I had to put a picture of the publisher's note in the photos, because it just highlights and underlines and bolds and italicizes and makes all-capitals just how special this copy is. I'll quote it in full here, too:

"Note. - The present edition is a direct reprint of that very scarce little volume: Aucassin & Nicolete Done into English by Andrew Lang, London: 1887. Published by David Nutt in the Strand. (Cap 8vo. Pp. xx: 70.): dedicated by its translator to the Hon. James Russell Lowell. The Translation was made in June, and the book printed at the Chiswick Press, in November, 1887.
The original etched title-page, (with a curious error in its date,) and three woodcut designs, by Jacomb Hood, are also reproduced in this Old World Edition.
But 550 copies, (500 only for sale) were issued on Japan Vellum, in wrappers, also 60 large paper copies.
Prices at recent book sales for small paper copies have been from four to five guineas."

Isn't that fantastic? This book is a fourth print of that one, and is one of 925 copies ever made sale, printed on Van Gellum paper, and though it does not come with a wrapper it is such a contained copy its ends fold in to protect the outer page-edges, almost like a little booklet that folds to create a box of its own, a self-protecting book curled in to protect its special contents. Still it is just a book, no folio case, and a slim one at that, but one that has somehow managed to last this long from the 1800s, with such a beautiful title design (reminiscent of illuminated manuscripts of old) on the front cover, and an even more beautiful frontispiece drawing inside of the two main characters. The fact it is a facsimile of the original, which was even more scarce at the time with just 500 copies for sale, is fascinating to me, because that means it is the same as the original but made available at least to some people for their own because of its popularity, yet still confined to 925 copies! It is like it wanted to be owned and cherished by readers as they likely would such a wonderful, beautiful, legendary text, but only a select few. Strange and intriguing, no?

The fact of this copy being so rare is not the only reason one should buy it, however, as knowing the story and its importance and wondrousness (yes it's a word I checked! and it's the perfect word to use here!) is the true reason above all that one should own a copy of this work--and especially this copy. It should be noted that Andrew Lang, the man we all know today as the FAMOUS author of the Fairy Books, or The Rainbow Fairy Books (if you don't know of them you should look them up, they are extremely expensive and highly collectible and wanted throughout the book collecting community, and such amazing works of literary art I can't even talk about them without envy of those who own copies--I have one for sale, in fact, the Violet Fairy Book, you should take a look!) translated this work from its original "anonymous medieval French chantefable," which is described as a combination of prose and verse (and literally translates to a "sung story").

Translating such a famous work is a hard thing to do, but of course the master of poetry and verse could do it and do it incredibly well, so much so that this work is renown today and was renown even more so in its own time! The story of Aucassin & Nicolete might never have been known to English-speaking audiences without the talents and time and wonderful skill of word that Andrew Lang exhibited all his lifetime, so we have him to thank, as well as the anonymous creator of this magical piece.

The story goes thus: "Aucassin et Nicolete" are two lovers, Aucassin the son of a Count, and Nicolete a Saracen Maiden. Nicolete has been sold to a "Viscount," baptized and adopted by him from birth, and as her father he renounced his knighthood for her. Because of this decision the grandfather orders Nicolete sent away, but she is instead locked by her "loving" but misguided father in a tower. Aucassin, meanwhile, is imprisoned by his own father the Count to prevent him from running to be with his love and help her escape, but instead it is Nicolete who escapes and runs to him. The lovers are tragically separated by the cell walls, but their love remains, and Nicolete tries to build a life while waiting for Aucassin to be freed to meet her. I won't give anything else away, but the story goes on even more dramatically and excitingly from there, and there truly is the sense of the legends and poems of King Arthur and his knights that floods the narrative from beginning to end. This French tale measures up to them all, even Le Morte D'Arthur, one of my own favorites, as it has everything you could look for in a tale from medieval times: romance, adventure, tragedy and magical lands where the compelling and foreign world of medieval times with knights who live by codes of honor and damsels in distress and all that is shining out from every page.

I can't recommend this book enough, and I would keep it but I can't keep every book that I love, and would love to help this book find a home and share the story that is not so well known today with someone who will fall for it the same way I did.

And here's the straight information you may be looking for:

-Full title: Aucassin & Nicolete, Done into English by Andrew Lang
-Original Author: Anonymous
-Original Language: French
-Translator/Writer: Andrew Lang
-Language: English
-Format: Hardcover but light, made seemingly of paper just hard enough to be considered "hardcover" and not a softcover, Old World Edition (facsimile edition, 4th print) one of just 925 copies. Maroon design illustrated manuscript-style title font on front, nothing on thin spine, pages uncut, inside frontispiece black and white protected from title page by thin wax sheet.
-Condition: Unbelievable for an old book, the book has stains of age on the cover but inside is preserved in such an astonishing way that it is truly impressive.
-Publisher: Thomas B Mosher, Portland Maine
-Copyright: Unstated. Research indicates Andrew Lang 1899
-Date published: 1899
-Provenance: I found this amazing, amazing book in a rare bookstore I frequent and though it was one of the more expensive ones, and I passed over it a few times because I wanted to save my money, it called to me every time I went into the shop and I finally decided to just go ahead and purchase it. :) This was in Connecticut along the coast just last month March 2017.
-Pricing: This book's rarity and specialness is evident in my description above, and that determined the price, as well as the condition of the book being so well preserved, and its being an exact facsimile and only one of 925 copies printed on the Van Gellum paper, too.

Reviews

5 out of 5 stars
(62)

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Returns & exchanges

I don't accept returns, exchanges, or cancellations
But please contact me if you have any problems with your order.

FAQs

Absolutely! I'm willing to do anything to get this book to you, but I will not write on it. If it is not in the condition you want, I know preservation techniques and will certainly oblige as best I can. You just need to let me know.
I will wrap the book any way you want. It is special and so are you, you deserve it! I will also write cards, include photographs, anything you'd like that would make this transaction more, well, you.
I won't tell you how to care for your book, but as to how they are cared for now, they are housed in two places -- some are wrapped in plastic in my main room in the part of the house that used to be a quaint B&B, lined on lovely old wooden bookshelves; others are stacked in piles or leaning on cool, creative and different bookends all round the room, and all are given care, attention, and kept away from my dog :)

Others sit in my library, in built-in authentic 1800s wooden and glass-door library shelves that line the walls in a secluded room in a historic home on the shore. With vintage, warm lamplights over the tiny marble fireplace, the library's windows catch plenty of sunlight--the books are in good homes and will arrive undamaged.
If the book comes later than expected this does not mean it was sent late. Every book is sent within 1-3 business days, unless one of the days is a Sunday, then it could be an extra day. This applies to International orders as well, but they might take longer to get to you than in-country orders. If there is a problem, please bring it up with UPS or see Etsy's policies.
I am more than willing to hunt down a specific book for you. This can take time, however, and would be a matter of personal back-and-forth on the site so you would have to keep in contact. There is no guarantee. I'm good at finding things however, and if I cannot find it to sell to you myself I will direct you to where I can find it online, if I can.

Important to note, however, that I may have it in my holdings already so it ALWAYS helps to check in with me. Listings come up continually, and it may just be waiting here to get processed and put up.
Contact me directly via the site and I will do my absolute best to help correct it. There should be no problems.
Always willing to make new friends and take on new jobs or opportunities -- this business does not stop me from working a full or part time job, and I am currently looking, so please contact me! Dempseylynch@gmail.com. I am definitely interested in talking with you and love meeting new people (especially book lovers of course).
Sure! Although the books are priced the way they are and are worth that amount based on a lot of factors (condition compared to others available online, if there are any available online or if it is the only one, age and whether it is signed or special in some way, etc.) I am always willing to hear you out as to why you think the books price is off, and work with you as best I can. I cannot guarantee the price will change, that is bad for my business, but I will listen to you. Don't be afraid to reach out. The worst that can happen is I will say no.

I put the reasons behind my pricing method for each item at the end of the listing so check that out if you're curious too :)

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