The Sign of Four

The Sign of Four


Doyle, Arthur Conan



[001501] Doyle, Arthur Conan. The Sign of Four. ill. Kerr, Charles. London: Spencer Blackett, 1890. First Edition. 8vo. Hardback. Good+ / No Jacket. [5], 2-283pp, [1]. Original cloth, title, author and publisher in gilt to spine, title and author in gilt to upper cover, black blocked border to covers with fleuron corner pieces

Spine slightly darkened and leaned, small hole repaired at head of spine (near the 'f' of 'of' in the title, minor rubbing to spine ends and extremities, corners lightly bumped. Paper inner joints slightly split, a couple of pages a little carelessly opened, small tear to fore edge margin of pages 199/200, one or two light spots, but generally fairly bright and clean. Frontispiece, by Charles Henry Malcolm Kerr (see Houfe, page 196), lacks the tissue guard, and without publisher's catalogue to rear found in some copies. W.H. Smith and Son blind stamp to ffep, with armorial bookplate of Gloucester to front pastedown 

The first issue cloth with 'Spencer Blackett's Standard Library' to foot of spine, with the misprints '13' on the contents page and 'w shed' on page 56. Now housed in a cloth drop back box made by Temple Bookbinders, with author and title to spine and upper cover

The second Sherlock Holmes novel, uncommonly bright and in the first issue cloth. The Sign of Four was written as a result of a dinner at the Langham Hotel, where Lippincott's agent J.M Stoddart had dinner with Conan Doyle, an Irish M.P. named Gill, and a certain Oscar Wilde, who also agreed to write for the magazine, and produced The Picture of Dorian Gray (see Green and Gibson, A Bibliography of A. Conan Doyle, page 40)

Green and Gibson A7