20th century: Dissidence & Emigre

GERTSEN, Aleksandr Ivanovich [Alexander HERZEN].

Byloe i dumy: Pervoe polnoe izdanie [My Past and Thoughts: First complete edition].
£750

First complete edition of Herzen's main work and "great historical classic" (Sviatopolk-Mirskii). Scarce: we could not trace any example at auction in or outside Russia in recent decades. Read more

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20th century: Dissidence & Emigre

AKHMATOVA, Anna.

U samogo moria [At the Edge of the Sea].
£850

Fine copy of the first edition in book form, one of 3,000 copies. This long poem, written in 1914, first appeared in the magazine Apollon in 1915, and represents a summing-up of Akhmatova's early manner.

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20th century: Dissidence & Emigre

AKHMATOVA, Anna.

Rekviem [Requiem].
£750

First edition of one of Akhmatova's most famous works. One of 500 copies only. Written between 1935 and 1940, 'Requiem' was not published in Russia until 1987.

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20th century: Dissidence & Emigre

SKITALETS [pseud. of Stepan Gavrilovich PETROV].

O znamenitykh russkikh liudiakh [On Famous Russian People].
£750

A very rare Japanese imprint. We are not aware of any other example having been on the market, and we could locate only two copies of this first edition in public institutions worldwide

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20th century: Dissidence & Emigre

SHALAMOV, Varlam Tikhonovich.

[Kolyma Stories] Kolymskie rasskazy.
£1,250

First edition of this important collection of stories on Soviet labour camps, which Shalamov (1907-82), a poet and man of letters on the wrong side of the Soviet authorities…

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

PUSHKIN, Aleksandr Sergeevich, Sergey LIFAR and Prof. M. L. GOFMAN (editors).

[Journey to Arzrum during the campaign of 1829].
£2,950

Fine copy of this private production, from the very rare issue of 50 copies only, each one bearing the printed name of the recipient, this one from the 30 copies on papier de Hollande, after 20 on Japon. Another issue was limited to 200 copies, without specific recipients... Read more

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20th century: Dissidence & Emigre

BULGAKOV, Mikhail.

Sobache serdtse [Heart of a dog].
SOLD

First publication in Russian of Bulgakov's suppressed satirical masterpiece, printed as the whole issue of Student magazine by Romanian exile Alex Flegon. Unpublishable in the Soviet Union until 1987, the text was circulated only in clandestine samizdat editions... Read more

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20th century: Dissidence & Emigre

BULGAKOV, Mikhail Afanasyevich.

Zapiski iunogo vracha; Diavoliada and Other Stories [Notes of a Young Doctor; Diaboliad and Other Stories].
£1,950

Comprising 10 stories first published in 1922-1926. The typescript partially reproduces the first and the only book by Bulgakov to be published in Russia during his lifetime.

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Literature: European languages

DUPRÉ DE SAINT-MAURE, Jean-Pierre-Émile (editor).

Anthologie russe, suivie de poésies originales.
£2,500

Pushkin and the Golden Age of Russian poetry come to the West: the very first publication of Russia's celebrated poet in Western Europe in the first anthology of Russian poetry in French.

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

DOSTOEVSKY, Fedor Mikhailovich.

Besy [The Devils, sometimes The Possessed or Demons].
£16,500

One of Dostoevsky's great novels, and the first of his books published by Dostoevsky himself. Besy captures "the full grandeur of Dostoevsky's extraordinary endeavor[…]"

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

TOLSTOY, Leo.

Pervyi vinokur ili kak chertenok kraiushku zasluzhil. Komediia [The First Distiller, or How the Little Devil Earned his Crust. A Comedy].
£1,500

The rare first edition of Tolstoy's first play, in the original wrappers. The First Distiller is a comedy on the evils of drink.

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

TOLSTOY, Leo.

Khoziain i rabotnik. Rasskaz [Master and Man. A Story].
£1,500

The first edition of one of Tolstoy's greatest and most popular short stories, with the original wrappers. This copy bears the correct first issue points…

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

BLOK, Aleksandr Aleksandrovich.

O liubvi, poezii i gosudarstvennoi sluzhbe [Dialogue About Love, Poetry and Government Service].
£125

Pleasant example of this uncommon work, which grew out of the play 'The King on the Square' (1907) and first appeared the same year in the magazine 'Pereval'. It reflects Blok's personal crisis, as well as his observations on the Russian society and the 1905 Revolution.

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20th century: Avant-Garde

ESENIN, Sergei, with Boris PASTERNAK, Andrei BELII et al.

Iav'. Stikhi [Reality. Poems].
£9,500

Exceptional association copy of this scandalous book of imagist poems, extensively inscribed by three co-authors – including Esenin - to a fourth one, Alexander Olenin (1865-1944).

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

YERMOLOV, Aleksei Petrovich, also ERMOLOV.

[Notes of Aleksey Petrovich Yermolov about the war of 1812 [Zapiski Alekseia Petrovicha Ermolova o voine 1812 goda].
£1,350

A detailed account of the Great Patriotic War by one of the most distinguished Russian military leaders. The important émigré first edition, printed in London and forbidden in Russia. A very good example with the rare printed wrapper bound-in. Read more

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20th century: Dissidence & Emigre

SOLZHENITSYN, Aleksandr Isaevich.

Odin den Ivana Denisovich [One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich].
£3,000

The rare first edition of Solzhenitsyn's first published book; a celebrated "pirate" edition published abroad without the author's consent.

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20th century: Dissidence & Emigre

TSVETAEVA, Marina.

Posle Rossii. 1922-1925 [After Russia. 1922-1925].
£3,950

First edition of Tsvetaeva's last book of poems, one of her major works, banned in the USSR; a lovely example, in original wrappers, one of 500 only, including 100 not for sale.

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

ALBERT THE GREAT and Mekhitar SEBASTATSI (editor).

Mec Alpert; t argmaneceal i va n ouc žamanakac , i mecamecac vardapetac meroc , i Lat in lezu i Hay barba : Ew nardenis i luys acec eal, ew srbagre ceal... [Compendium of Theology of St. Albert the Great].
£14,500

Opening a new, important page in the history of Armenian printing: the first work printed by Mekhitar of Sebaste in Venice, and very possibly the first work he edited.

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20th century: Dissidence & Emigre

GROSSMAN, Vasilii.

Vse techet [Everything flows].
£125

Grossman's first tamizdat novel - banned in Soviet Union until 1989. Although Grossman (1905-64) began his major opus Zhizn i sudba [Life and Fate] before, Vse techet saw light first (and posthumously), in 1970 in Germany. Read more

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

TOLSTOY, Lev.

Kreitzerova sonata; Poslesloviye k 'Kreitzerovoi sonate' [Kreitzer Sonata; Afterward to Kreitzer Sonata].
£600

Second edition, corrected according to Tolstoy's original manuscript. The novel began circulating in scripts the moment Tolstoy finished it, after eight drafts, in November 1889.

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20th century: Dissidence & Emigre

PASTERNAK, Boris.

Doktor Zhivago.
£1,750

First Feltrinelli edition in Russian (the third overall), first printing, issued in the very attractive and distinctive dust jacket designed by Ampelio Tettamanti (1914-1961), matching that of the first edition in Italian…

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

TOLSTOY, Lev Nikolaevich.

Detstvo i Otrochestvo. [Childhood and Adolescence]
£3,950

Tolstoy's own editing of his first novel: a lovely example, rare in original wrappers, of this second edition, specially adapted for children's reading and showing for the first time a different version from the standard text. Becoming a father of many children in the 1860s and 70s, Tolstoy developed a keen interest in educational practices... Read more

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

TOLSTOY, Lev.

Vlast Tmy [The Power of Darkness].
£1,100

The first edition of the play "The Power of Darkness", which was forbidden by the tsarist censorship for the stage until 1895. The play was based on the criminal case of a peasant from the Tula province

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

TOLSTOY, Lev Nikolaevich.

Anna Karenina.
£14,500

The first complete edition - and the first book edition - of the celebrated novel. Tolstoy started writing Anna Karenina in early 1873; in May 1873 he finished the first draft.

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20th century: Dissidence & Emigre

TSVETAEVA, Marina Ivanovna, et al.

Antologiia [Anthology]
£1,000

First edition: an anthology of poetry, including pieces by Solovyov, Blok, Bely, Voloshin, Gorodetskii, Gumilev, Viacheslav Ivanov, Kuzmin, and Tsvetaeva.

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

KUZMIN, Mikhail Alekseevich.

Krylia. Povest v trekh chastiakh. [Wings. A Tale in Three Parts.]
£4,500

First book edition of the first Russian homoerotic novel. The 1905 revolution forced Nicholas II to endorse a parliamentary system, and to abolish practically all pre-emptive censorship of the press.

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Erotica

PUSHKIN, Aleksandr and Boris TOMASHEVSKII (editor).

Gavriliada [The Gabrieliad].
£50

The first scholarly edition of the censored and provocative work by Russia's greatest national poet. Bored and revolted by the pious hypocrisy of the Russian Orthodox Church, Pushkin wrote this blasphemous and erotic poem, satirising the Church's most revered dogmas of Annunciation... Read more

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

TOLSTOY, Lev.

Smert Ivana Ilicha. Plody Prosveshcheniia [The Death of Ivan Ilich. Fruits of Enlightenment].
SOLD

One of the great short stories in all literature (Terras): a pinnacle of Tolstoy's introspection, published here together with his provocative play, a satire of Russian aristocracy. A fine example of this influential work, scarce in any edition... Read more

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

PUSHKIN, A[leksandr Sergeevich].

Bratia razboiniki [The Robber Brothers].
£3,000

Pushkin on one sheet: an excellent copy preserved as a single folded broadsheet, unstitched and unopened, including the printed wrappers. This is the second edition, published the same year as the first. This unfinished narrative poem, written in 1822, had appeared in 'Polarania zvezda' [Pole Star] for 1825. Read more

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

PASTERNAK, Boris Leonidovich.

Bliznets v tuchakh [A Twin in Storm Clouds].
£14,000

Rare first edition of the Nobel's winner's first book, one of 200 copies. When 'Bliznets v tuchakh' came out on the cusp of 1914, the Russian critics, especially the futurists led by Vladimir Mayakovsky, were sceptical.

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20th century: Dissidence & Emigre

BULGAKOV, Mikhail.

Khanskii ogon [Khan's flame].
£2,000

First appearance in print of this short story, originally indended to be included in the "Diaboliad". In her discussion of "Khanskii ogon", Haber detects a distinct pessimism in Bulgakov's account of Prince Tugai-Beg

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

[D’AGOULT, Charles (Attrib.)].

Akh, kak vy glupy gospoda frantsuzy. [Oh, How Stupid You Are Mr Frenchmen].
£1,450

Attractive example of this anti-revolutionary tract, first published in Paris in 1790 as Bon Dieu! Qu'ils sont bêtes ces Français! This work takes a strong stance against the free-thinking works of Voltaire, and what are seen as the sacrilegious ideas of the French Materialist philosophers... Read more

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20th century: Dissidence & Emigre

MANDELSHTAM, Osip Emilevich.

Kamen. [Stone.]
£12,500

First edition of the first book by one of Russia's greatest 20th-century poets. The thin book is in itself a symbol of the pre-revolutionary Russia…

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Literature: European languages

MONTESKE – MONTESQUIEU, Charles Louis de.

Pisma persidskiia. S frantsuskago iazyka perevel kol. sov. Efim Roznotovskii. [Lettres persanes.] [Persian Letters. Translated from French by the Collegiate Councillor Efim Roznotovskii].
£3,750

A masterpiece of French Enlightenment in Catherine's Russia: very rare early translation of Montesquieu, the first illustrated. Completed in 1721, this important piece of French literature recounts in 161 letters the experiences of two Persian noblemen... Read more

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Literature: Russian and neighbours

PUSHKIN, Aleksandr, LIFAR Sergey (editor).

Puteshestvie v Arzrum vo vremia pokhoda 1829 goda [A Journey to Arzrum during the campaign of 1829].
£495

The first book edition of Pushkin's best travel account, including an unpublished draft and limited to 200 copies only. This Journey to Arzrum published by the famous dancer, choreographer and collector Sergei Mikhailovich Lifar (1905-86), was among the most important publications of Pushkiniana outside of Russia. Read more

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Out of stock
SOLD

20th century: Dissidence & Emigre

PASTERNAK, Boris.

Doktor Zhivago.

The true first Russian edition of the celebrated and accidentally controversial novel by the great Russian Silver Age poet, a piracy created with close involvement of the CIA.

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