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by Stowe, Harriet Beecher

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Stowe, Harriet Beecher. UNCLE TOM'S CABIN. Boston: John P. Jewett, 1852. 2 vols. First edition, first printing. Modern quarter brown morocco, raised bands, gilt, and marbled boards, with original covers bound in. Minor foxing, but a fine set. Originally issued in three publisher's bindings (wrappers at $1; cloth, gilt at $1.50; and cloth, fully gilt at $2). The covers bound in at rear of each volume represent both the regular cloth binding and the fully gilt gift binding. Stowe's landmark work was called "the Black Man's Iliad" by Robert Downs (BOOKS THAT CHANGED AMERICA). It sold 3,000 copies on the day of publication (out of 5,000 copies in the first printing), and sales reached 50,000 copies within eight weeks, and soared to more than 300,000 within the year. Kurt Vonnegut, citing this work, called Stowe "the only writer in history who had an effect on the course of world affairs." Abraham Lincoln called this work "the book that made this big war." BAL 19343 (with the Hobbart and Robbins slugs and all 18 first printing readings in both volumes). Johnson Highspot. Grolier American Hundred 61. Grolier English Hundred 91. African-American Hundred and One 31. Printing and the Mind of Man 332.

In Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriett Beecher Stowe, the title character Uncle Tom is a long-suffering slave, loyal to both his faith and his master. Presented with an opportunity to escape, he instead chooses to remain in slavery to avoid embarrassing his master. After being sold to a slave trader, Tom suffers brutal treatment and is eventually beaten to death for his refusal to betray his friends — made to represent an ideal of true Christianity. Enormously popular (it was the best-selling novel of the 19th century) and influential, it’s publication in 1852 was instrumental in bringing visibility to the cruel reality of slavery. In more recent years, it has come under considerable criticism for its portrayal of meekness and subservience and the phrase “Uncle Tom” is sometimes used as an epithet for someone seen as overly subservient.  Read more: Identifying first editions of UNCLE TOM'S CABIN


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Some terminology that may be used in this description includes:
raised band(s)
Raised bands refer to the ridges that protrude slightly from the spine on leather bound books.  The bands are created ...[more]
Morocco is a style of leather book binding that is usually made with goatskin, as it is durable and easy to dye.(see also Goatsk...[more]
Marbled boards
A hardcover book with a decorative colored paper that imitates marble using a mottled, veined, or swirling pattern....[more]
Bibliography of American Literature (commonly abbreviated as BAL in descriptions) is the quintessential reference work for any s...[more]
"Cloth-bound" generally refers to a hardcover book with cloth covering the outside of the book covers.The cloth is stretched ove...[more]
A book in fine condition exhibits no flaws. A fine condition book closely approaches As New condition, but may lack the crispne...[more]


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