Item #5000669 Selected Poems of Henry Lawson. Illustrated by Percy Leason. Henry LAWSON.
Selected Poems of Henry Lawson. Illustrated by Percy Leason.
Selected Poems of Henry Lawson. Illustrated by Percy Leason.
Selected Poems of Henry Lawson. Illustrated by Percy Leason.

Selected Poems…
Selected Poems of Henry Lawson. Illustrated by Percy Leason.

Sydney: Angus & Robertson, 1918.

Large octavo, with coloured frontispiece portrait and nine tipped-in engraved plates, tipped-in publisher's pictorial device at the end followed by a printing of the dustwrapper illustration prepared for the ordinary edition; a fine copy, uncut in the original quarter dark grey cloth and light grey boards with coloured vignette on the upper board.

Presented by George Robertson to Lawson's son Jim

First edition: the final publication in Lawson's lifetime and a beautifully designed and achieved monument to the poet. In contrast to the rather luxurious nature of the publication, by this time Lawson was in the later stages of medical problems compounded by his alcoholism. Destitute, and dependent on the kindness of friends, it was not long before the Commonwealth Literary Fund granted him £1 a week pension. He died at Abbotsford on 2 September 1922.

First edition: the final publication in Lawson's lifetime and a beautifully designed and achieved monument to the poet. In contrast to the rather luxurious nature of the publication, by this time Lawson was in the later stages of medical problems compounded by his alcoholism. Destitute, and dependent on the kindness of friends, it was not long before the Commonwealth Literary Fund granted him £1 a week pension. He died at Abbotsford on 2 September 1922.

This superb copy of the very scarce limited large paper issue of the first edition was presented by George Robertson of Lawson's publishers Angus and Robertson to Lawson's son Joseph Henry ('Jim') Lawson. Number 35 of 75 copies, numbered and signed by Lawson and by Percy Leason as artist, the presentation inscription, in George Robertson's hand, reads: "Mr Jim Lawson, With the publishers' compliments".

David McKee Wright's elegant long preface, written at the end of the Great War, sets Lawson's distinctive poetic voice in the context of those changing times. He salutes 'the first articulate voice of the real Australian' and finishes with his admiration for the "vital red-blooded work … that comes so straight from the heart that it must always find a heart to respond to it. All Australia is there, painted with a big brush in the colours in which its people see it".

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Mackaness, 24B; Miller, p. 272; Serle, p. 115.

Condition Report: A little offsetting otherwise a very good copy

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