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LAWRENCE, T.E.. Revolt in the desert.

London. Jonathan Cape 30 Bedford Square, 1927. First English edition (Limited edition, no. 63/300).
Quarto. [2], 445pp, [1]. With half-title/limitation, coloured frontispiece portrait of Lawrence, eighteen further illustrations, nine of which are coloured, and a large folding map to rear. Original publisher's brown quarter-pigskin over sand-coloured buckram boards, gilt. Dustwrapper. T.E.G., others uncut. A remarkably preserved copy, with only the slightest of shelf-wear externally, bookplate (a skull with the initials PMF) and slight marking to FEP, else fine. Dustwrapper (correctly displaying 'Limited Edition' to spine and upper board panels) with some loss and tearing, tape removal marks to verso, inner flaps trimmed at both corners.
In an effort to recoup some of the costs of the production of the 1926 edition of Seven Pillars of Wisdom, British army officer, diplomat and man of letters T.E. Lawrence (1888-1935) first contemplated selling his library at Pole Hill, Chingford, before settling on the publication of an abridgement of Seven Pillars entitled Revolt in the Desert. This effort, undertaken by the author himself, saw the first seven chapters dropped entirely; reducing the size of the text by around a third. However, suggestions that Lawrence refused to countenance publication of any more copies than were necessary to clear the debts owing from the production of the larger Seven Pillars suggests he was not altogether happy with the reduction.

This First English edition, limited in number to 300 copies, was nevertheless a lavish production, finely printed on large paper dictated by the inclusion of the 10 beautiful colour plates from the 1926 subscriber's edition of Seven Pillars, depicting Lawrence, Storrs, Tafas el Hazimi, Emir Shakir and Jaafar Pasha amongst others, was published at the high price of five guineas. Neither the price of this edition, nor the abridgement, appeared to have harmed the appeal of this large paper limited edition or the trade edition published a few days later: both sold out almost instantly, only further cementing the fame of the retiring 'Lawrence of Arabia'.

This is only the second copy in a dustwrapper that we have encountered during our 13 years of trading; the majority were presumably discarded to reveal the more pigskin-backed binding.
O'Brien A101.
£ 2,500.00 Antiquates Ref: 22016