ST. LEON: A TALE OF THE SIXTEENTH CENTURY. London: Printed for G. G. and J. Robinson, Paternoster-Row, 1799. 12mo, four volumes: pp. [1-4] [i] ii-xii  2-331 [332: blank]; [1-4]  2-331 [332: blank]; [1-4]  2-286 [287-288: ads]; [1-4]  2-336, recently re-sewn and rebound in three-quarter brown calf and marbled boards with new linen hinges, new endpapers and new headbands, leather tooled in gold and blind, leather title and number pieces on spines. First edition, first printing of each volume, all with title pages dated 1799. A well-known Gothic novel by the father of Mary Shelley first published in 1799. "... well worth reading ... an obvious source for much that recurs in FRANKENSTEIN." - Bleiler, The Guide to Supernatural Fiction 700. "A fundamental novel for the occult tradition: elixir of life, Wandering Jew, etc. See my study of Bulwer's ZANONI in Strange Stories, pp. 159-232." - Wolff, XIX Century Fiction, vol. II, p. 130. "Inferior to CALEB WILLIAMS (1794) in both psychodrama and internalized Gothic effects, ST. LEON represents Godwin's ill-advised attempt to write a more traditional type of Gothic novel." - Frank, The First Gothics 140. "ST. LEON is remembered now rather for its position in the history of the novel than for any intrinsic charm. Godwin was the first to embody in a romance of ideas of the Rosicrucians which inspired Bulwer Lytton's ZICCI, ZANONI and A STRANGE STORY." - Birkhead, The Tale of Terror, pp. 111-6. Barron (ed), Fantasy Literature 1-30. Barron (ed), Horror Literature 1-33. Bleiler, Science-Fiction: The Early Years 899. Summers, A Gothic Bibliography, p. 493. Tymn (ed), Horror Literature 1-129. Bleiler (1978), p. 83. Reginald 06072. Wolff 2589. Garside, Raven and Schöwerling 1799: 42. All volumes have the half title leaves, volume three lacks N12, a leaf of ads. Scattered foxing to all volumes early and late, half title and title leaves restored to obliterate old perforated library stamps of the Kansas City Public Libraries, short closed tear at lower margin of IV: K5 of volume four. Now a handsome copy in a beautifully executed binding by Dragonfly Bindery & Studio. A very scarce book. (#151821).
No statement of printing.