Huysmans 'Against the Grain' 1st

Gordon Neavill aa3401 at
Tue Dec 4 13:29:46 EST 2001

The correct binding is #6 without the grape vine.  Rockwell Kent's binding
design with the grape vine on the spine and a large gold torchbearer on the
front panel was used from April 1929 through spring 1930.  It was a fine
design, but it required a large amount of gold leaf and added half a cent
per volume to the binding cost.  That half a cent doomed the design.  The
seven ML titles published during summer and early fall of 1930 retained the
grape vine on the spine but blind-stamped the torchbearer on the front cover
(Cervantes, Don Quixote through Huxley, Point Counter Point).  The three
titles published in late November and December 1930 (Plato, Works; Kent,
Wilderness; and Huysmans, Against the Grain) dropped the grape vine from the
spine but restored gold leaf to the torchbearer (now reduced in size) on the
front panel.

Balloon cloth bindings at this period appeared in four colors--red, green,
blue, and brown (the brown is fairly reddish and sometimes approaches
maroon)--with top edges stained to match.  No priority among these; the
books were published simultaneously in all four bindings.  I have four
jacketed firsts of the Huysmans, one in each binding color--my only example
of a full set of bindings from this period.


----- Original Message -----
From: j b krygier <jbkrygie at>
To: ModLib List <modlib at>
Sent: Saturday, December 01, 2001 11:29 AM
Subject: Huysmans 'Against the Grain' 1st

> Hi ModLib,
> I found a copy of Huysmans 'Against the Grain' that is a noted
> "First Modern Library Edition, 1930."  The DJ lists 185 titles,
> which is correct for the first according to the Toledano Guide.
> However, the Guide says the the correct binding for the first
> is binding #5 (this is the one with the elaborate grape vine at
> the base of the spine).  The copy of Huysmans I have has
> binding #6 (the same as #5 without the grape vines).
> Which is the correct binding for a 1st of this title?
> If #5 bindings of this title exist, then were there two different
> spines for the 1st ed of this title?
> thanks!
> John K.
> --
> j   b   k r y g i e r
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