[ModLib] Lord Jim Mystery

JOHN PETERSON jpetersonlhi at verizon.net
Sun Apr 5 20:36:37 EDT 2009


A while back I found a strange book in an antique mall.  It was a copy of Wuthering Heights (#7 binding which dates to Fall, '32), which had a Lord Jim DJ (dating to Fall, '31).  The book was in terrible shape, but the DJ wasn't bad.  Because it was only $1, I bought it, thinking that I'd keep an eye out for a DJ-less Lord Jim of similar vintage.  Yesterday I found a pretty good FMLE Lord Jim (Spring '31, #6 binding) without a DJ for $5.  My self-congratulation turned to consternation when I matched the Conrad DJ to the book, and found that the book is almost 1/4" taller than the DJ!

My first thought was that the DJ had been defaced to fit the smaller Bronte title by some ruthless antique dealer, but close examination of the DJ indicates otherwise.  The green bands at the top and bottom of the DJ are exactly the same widths as those on my other balloon cloth DJs.  The only two other explanations I can think of are that a.) the FMLE Lord Jim is taller than some later printings, or b.) That my DJ was mistakenly put on the wrong book at the publishing house--although the DJ is a year older than the book it wrongly covered.

Any guesses as to what's going on here?  Anybody know how to stretch a 78 y/o DJ?

John Peterson
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