Philadelphia: George Barrie, 1899. Memorial edition, limited to 100 copies lettered A-Z and 1-74, this copy "U". 53 volumes in full crushed turquoise morocco. Spine in five raised bands, gilt lined with a fleur de lis design. Boards with gilt lines, fleur de lis in the corners with a red fleur de lis as the central medallion. Gilt inner dentelles, red morocco panel inside front board, red moire silk endpapers. Five raised bands at spine w/ decorative gilt in the compartments; top edge gilt, others untrimmed. Two sets of plates for each illustration, printed on parchment paper.
Owing to his keen observation of detail and unfiltered representation of society, Balzac is regarded as one of the founders of realism in European literature... He is renowned for his multi-faceted characters; even his lesser characters are complex, morally ambiguous and fully human. Inanimate objects are imbued with character as well; the city of Paris, a backdrop for much of his writing, takes on many human qualities. His writing influenced many famous writers, including the novelists Émile Zola, Charles Dickens, Marcel Proust, Gustave Flaubert, and Henry James, and filmmakers François Truffaut and Jacques Rivette. Many of Balzac's works have been made into films and continue to inspire other writers. James called him "really the father of us all." (Wikipedia)
The boards are a deep turquoise, the spines are unevenly colored, which is quite beautiful on the shelf, suggesting almost opalescent hues of turquoise, green and tan. One volume with a small, expert spine repair .
Overall, a magnificent set of this foundational French novelist. Item #27193