The Very Rare, Very Collectible Fiction of Sir Gilbert Edward Campbell
Campbell, Sir Gilbert [Edward]. MYSTERIES OF THE UNSEEN; OR, SUPERNATURAL STORIES OF ENGLISH LIFE … [with] WILD AND WEIRD; OR, REMARKABLE STORIES OF RUSSIAN LIFE … [with] DARK STORIES FROM THE SUNNY SOUTH; OR, LEGENDS OF THE MEDITERRANEAN. London, New York, and Melbourne: Ward, Lock, and Co., 1889. Octavo, three volumes: pp. [1-6]  2-143 [144: blank]; [1-4]  2-162; [1-3] viii  2-175 [176: blank], [notes: first leaf in volume one is a half title leaf; no half title leaves called for in volumes two and three; this issue of volume one has printer’s imprint at base of page 143 and no decorative device on page ; page 4 of preliminaries of volume three is mis-numbered “viii”], original green cloth, front and rear panels ruled in blind, spine panels lettered and ruled in gold, all edges trimmed, ribbon page markers in each volume, blue-gray endpapers. First editions. Cloth bind-ups of three volumes issued simultaneously in paper covers as Ward, Lock’s “Shilling Novels,” numbers 93, 94 and 95. Probably a publisher’s binding for libraries (we have seen other Ward, Lock books in similar cloth bindings).
“Especially attractive to the connoisseur of rare horror fiction are Campbell’s three short story collections: DARK STORIES FROM THE SUNNY SOUTH; OR, LEGENDS OF THE MEDITERRANEAN (1889), MYSTERIES OF THE UNSEEN; OR, SUPERNATURAL STORIES OF ENGLISH LIFE (1889); and WILD AND WEIRD; OR, REMARKABLE STORIES OF RUSSIAN LIFE (1889).
The last contains ‘The White Wolf of the Kostopchin,’ regarded as one of the best werewolf tales of the nineteenth century. These three books were issued simultaneously in a popular cheap format and were also published together as an omnibus under the Wild and Weird banner.”
– Sullivan (ed), The Penguin Encyclopedia of Horror and the Supernatural, p. 67.
“An omnibus of Victorian sensational supernatural fiction, set in Russia, Italy and England, involving ghosts, diabolism, death portents, even a werewolf. Rousing full-blooded stuff, lurid and unsubtle but quite entertaining; another aspect of the tradition, in contrast to say, Mrs. Oliphant. A major collection of its kind.”
– Robert Knowlton.
“The stories set in Russia are the most successful works in this collection. They are fairly long and the florid treatment fits the folkloristic subject matter. The British stories are literal and crude.”
– Bleiler, The Guide to Supernatural Fiction, 338.
Wilson, Shadows in the Attic, p. 129. Bleiler (1978), p. 38. Reginald 02493. Topp, Victorian Yellowbacks & Paperbacks, 1849-1905 II, p. 328.
A fine set. A superior copy of a rare book seldom found in nice condition. (#113073).
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