Cambridge: Printed for the Limited Editions Club at the University Press, 1951. Two volumes, measuring 8.75 x 6 inches: xii, 1-504; , 505-935. Original color-printed pictorial cloth, spines lettered in gilt, top edges gilt, color pictorial endpapers. Title pages and colophon printed in black and green; occasional vignettes printed in green; dozens of color lithographs by Barnett Freedman, pulled at the Curwen Press, throughout text. Spines lightly sunned, lightest wear to spine ends. Housed in publisher's shelfworn red card slipcase with pastedown label. With: bound presentation suite of Freedman’s lithographic proofs, measuring 8.75 x 6 inches: 50 leaves. Ivory cloth boards monogrammed with the letter “P,” black cloth spine lettered in gilt, top edge gilt. Ink inscription to first blank: “1st Proofs of Lithographs / Title & Colophon pages / Cloth covers, Endpapers etc / for / ANNA KARENINA / by / Leo Tolstoy / Limited Editions Club U.S.A. - printed / at the Curwen Press, London / Barnett Freedman 1951 / for Patsy Cohen - January 1953.” Section headings in Freedman’s hand throughout volume. Housed in original slipcase.
Modern fine press edition of Leo Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina, first published in parts between 1873 and 1877 in The Russian Messenger. Surveying the swiftly modernizing Russian scene, juxtaposing the destructive affair of Anna and Vronsky with the redemptive marriage of Kitty and Levin, Tolstoy produced one of the greatest psychological novels: “He descended, for a long while avoiding looking at her as at the sun, yet seeing her, as one does the sun, without looking.” The son of Russian immigrants, illustrator Barnett Freedman was one of the key English book designers of the twentieth century: he individually prepared hundreds of lithographic stones to produce this limited edition of Anna Karenina. This is copy 1334 of 1500 copies published, signed by Freedman on the colophon. The novel is accompanied by an additional bound suite of Freedman’s lithographic proofs, monogrammed with a “P” and inscribed to Patsy Cohen, midcentury art director at William Collins, for whom Freedman designed several dust jackets. Four years after Freedman presented these proofs to Cohen, Collins would reissue Freedman’s illustrated editions of Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights, first produced for the Heritage Press. LEC 213. A near-fine example of a celebrated book, and a terrific publishing association copy, with the first proofs of Freedman’s illustrations.