An original 1865 edition of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, the Lewis Carroll fantasy that went on to become one of the most famous works in children’s literature, will be offered in a stand-alone sale taking place on June 16th at Christie’s New York.
Christies’s: This copy was given by Lewis Carroll to George William Kitchin, a colleague of Carroll’s at Christ Church, and Secretary of the School Book Committee for the University Press. Kitchin later gave the book to his daughter Alexandra (‘Xie’) Rhoda Kitchin (born 1864), who was one of Carroll’s favourite photographic models. The book is accompanied by an original photograph of her taken by Lewis Carroll. She sold the copy at auction in 1925, but, sadly, died on the day of the sale.
Francis Wahlgren, Christie’s International Director of Science & Books, says, “Seeing an 1865 Alice is a very special thing. There are only 23 surviving copies, of which all but five are in public institutions.”
This edition has remained remarkably intact over the intervening 150 years since its publication, and still features its original binding, binder’s ticket and title page.
“It has the original integrity which any collector really values,” Wahlgren adds. It’s one of ten surviving copies still in original red cloth, only two of which are in private hands, the other copy is described as ‘heavily worn’.
Additional information at Christie’s, including a wonderful video, here.