Khalil Gibran - The Madman. His Parables and Poems - Knopf, US, 1918 - Signed First Edition


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Octavo. Original black cloth, titles gilt to spine and front cover, top edge black. Three two-tone illustrated plates from drawings by the author. Contents occasionally marked, few smudges but perfectly sound, boards a little rubbed and marked, spine dull, very good. First edition, first printing, of Gibran's first Knopf title, and his first work printed in English. Inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, “With regards from Kahlil Gibran”, additionally inscribed on the half-title, “To Lord Dunsany, hoping I may have the pleasure off welcoming him to America and he will meet my friends, from Julia Ellsworth Ford & Kahlil Gibran Oct 8th 1919”, in a separate hand. Julia Ellsworth Ford was a New York literary socialite who was instrumental in garnering American support for many Irish writers including Yeats, whom she introduced to John Quinn. She was as such one of Gibran’s more influential patrons, and her choice of presentee for this particular copy was inspired. Dunsany had already published a handful of fantastical (not to say mystical) works and though the differences between the Irish aristocrat and the Lebanese poet are obvious at the same time there is of course much that cognate too. This is the earliest Gibran title practically to be obtainable. His earlier works were printed (in Arabic) on a series of obscure private presses in New York, with recorded copies in single figures and chiefly confined to American institutions.   


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