[ModLib] Lord Jim Mystery

John Wolansky jwol at fast.net
Sun Apr 5 21:23:50 EDT 2009

My 1st Lord Jim is slightly oversized with a matching DJ, too.  I have a
number of other volumes slightly larger than normal for the ‘30’s ML’s,


8.2 Dreiser’s Sister Carrie from 1937

68.3 Lawrence Women in Love from 1938

88.3 Dos Passos 42nd from 1937 (no dj)

191.2 Edmonds Rome Haul from 1938


And, you are aware of the two 1939 Blumenthal sized balloon cloth books like
54.3, Dinesen’s Seven Gothic Tales and 11.3, Stone’s Lust for Life, both
from 1939.


Looks like the two 1939 books were leading into Blumenthal sized bindings.
Who can say why the blip in sizes in 1937 and 1938.


I have another slight anomaly I attribute to production error.  Two copies
of 8.1, De Maupassant’s Mademoiselle Fifi, one with catalog 1 is slightly
oversized, nearly 1/8”, and the other, with catalog 5, is nearly 1/8”
shorter!  I presumed the covers were simply miss cut.  The taller copy does
have slightly taller pages, though, while the undersized copy has regular


I have a copy or two in the Everyman’s Library series where the jacket had
an unusual amount of creasing along the top edge.  When I unfolded the
creases on the 1920’s dj’s, I discovered they were taller than the normal
book size by nearly ¼”.  Again, I thought production errors.


John Wolansky


-----Original Message-----
From: modlib-bounces at owu.edu [mailto:modlib-bounces at owu.edu] On Behalf Of
Sent: Sunday, April 05, 2009 8:37 PM
To: For collectors of Modern Library books
Subject: [ModLib] Lord Jim Mystery


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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