GRETTIR THE OUTLAW: A STORY OF ICELAND. London, Glasgow, Edinburgh, and Dublin: Blackie & Son, 1890. Octavo, pp. [i-v] vi [vii] viii [ix-x]  12-384 + undated 32-page publisher's catalogue inserted at rear, ten inserted plates with illustrations by M. Zeno Diemer plus inserted fold-out two-color topographical map of Iceland, original pictorial brown cloth, front and spine panels stamped in black, gold and dark brown, rear panel ruled in blind, plum coated endpapers, all edges stained green. First edition. "An adaptation of the Icelandic 'Saga of Grettir the Strong' by this Victorian author and antiquarian, who began working on the project in his spare time around 1860, at which point he knew nothing of the language, and since the only reference works on Icelandic were in Danish, as he points out in a preface here, he had to learn Danish first in order to learn Icelandic. The resulting work has been republished many times and must be acknowledged a significant influence on the rise of heroic fantasy in the twentieth century. The present story mostly relates realistic adventures, but one chapter gives a vivid portrait of a pagan cursing ceremony. These Icelandic sagas were composed in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries to relate events from three to four centuries earlier." - Robert Eldridge. Baring-Gould's "diverse works make [him] something of a forerunner to writers as various as M. R. James, Andrew Lang, William Morris, Eden Philpotts and Montague Summers." - Clute and Grant (eds), The Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997), p. 85. Not in Bleiler (1948; 1978) or Reginald (1979; 1992) or Day, Supplemental Checklist of Fantastic Literature. 1895 school prize label affixed to the front paste-down. Spine ends and corner tips rubbed, a very good copy. (#148143).
No statement of printing.