Item #5000670 For the Term of His Natural Life. Unabridged edition with Introduction by Hilary Lofting…. Marcus CLARKE.
For the Term of His Natural Life. Unabridged edition with Introduction by Hilary Lofting…

For the Term of His Natural Life…
For the Term of His Natural Life. Unabridged edition with Introduction by Hilary Lofting…

Sydney: Angus and Robertson, 1929.

Large octavo, frontispiece portrait of Clarke and 45 full-page photogravure illustrations; original brown cloth, spine gilt, with pictorial dustjacket.

The first unabridged edition of an Australian classic.

The first unabridged edition of an Australian classic.

Clarke's major work was originally printed as a serial in The Australian Journal between March 1870 and June 1872, and first published in book form as His Natural Life in 1874; this reprints for the first time the actual full text from the original Australian Journal version. Henry Lawson thought "The introduction was, I think, equal to Dickens in style", and lamented the 1874 publication: "the sight of it in book form with its mutilated chapters and melodramatic prologue exasperates me even now".

The "convict novel of immense proportions and power" (OCAL) was perhaps the greatest novel of the colonial era, depicting "the true face of a convict system that was still within the living memory of many Australians" (People, Print and Paper).

For years remembered for this one book - it has remained in print since its first publication and has been dramatised, filmed, abridged, anthologised and translated - Clarke is now recognised for his major achievements in all fields. As OCAL remarks: "he was amazingly versatile and made significant contributions to colonial literary culture… As an historian… he helped to create the romance of the Australian past, as had Cooper and Hawthorne for American literature. As a short-story writer he… preceded Lawson in opening up the bush to Australian readers. As a critic he took part… in the great questions of the day and wrote perceptively about American, English and European literature… As a journalist he continued… the investigative tradition of Henry Mayhew".

Miller, 611.

Condition Report: Front inner hinge a little weak, otherwise fine; the dustjacket just worn at top and bottom of spine.

Price (AUD): $265.00

US$178.80   Other currencies

Ref: #5000670

Condition Report