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Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Some Sequels

This week's post is not about famous literary sequels (although we have plenty of those here--Through the Looking Glass, anyone?), but instead provides sequels to a couple of blog posts from the archive.

Back in 2011 I wrote about our acquisition of an early American copy of John Polidori's genre-creating tale, The Vampyre. As a follow-up, I am pleased to note that the Rosenbach has recently acquired a 1819 London copy, published for Sherwood, Neely, and Jones.

John Polidori The Vampyre. London:Sherwood, Neely, and Jones, 1819. The Rosenbach of the Free Library of Philadelphia

The history of the early London book printings of The Vampyre is a bit confusing, with a half-dozen issues being produced in 1819, but the copy we acquired was the first widely-available book version of the tale. (You can find a helpful rundown of the printing history at the Bibliodeviancy Blog  and the  L.W. Curry dealers) It is the second state of the first edition published by Sherwood and was the first to remove all mention of Lord Byron from the title page. Byron had erroneously been identified as the author or source of the tale in earlier book and magazine versions. An owner has helpfully penciled in Byron's name on the title page of our copy and on the flyleaf are notes in various hands about the publishing history of the story, including a clear note that it was by Polidori.

John Polidori The Vampyre. London:Sherwood, Neely, and Jones, 1819. The Rosenbach of the Free Library of Philadelphia

For my second sequel we turn from vampires to children's books and return to Patrick Rodger's post about the band Ha Ha Tonka, and their album inspired in part by Maurice Sendak's final Fresh Air interview. Apparently Ha Ha Tonka weren't the only musicians who were taken by that interview--I just found out about a choral composition by composer Nathan Hall that draws its text from the interview.  The eight part composition is entitled "I Am in Love with the World" and debuts in Baltimore on June 7. You can read more about the piece,  its composition, and hear excerpts at Current.org.



Kathy Haas is the Associate Curator at The Rosenbach of the Free Library of Philadelphia
and the primary poster at the Rosen-blog.

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