Hard Cover. Boston: James R. Osgood and Company, 1882. First Edition. Near Fine.
First edition, first issue with Franklin Press imprint. Publisher's three-quarter brown morocco over marbled boards, spine lettered and decorated in gilt, marbled endpapers. An excellent copy with wear along edges and corners, spine bright and unfaded, front hinge a bit tender, a former owner 1882 Christmas gift inscription to first blank. A very bright and attractive copy. BAL 3404. The Prince and the Pauper is Twain's first attempt at historical fiction. Specifically, this novel, set in the 16th century, tells the story a young Prince Edward VI of England and a peasant boy named Tom Canty. After a chance meeting, the two boys decide to switch places and experience how the other half lives. Although the story is fiction, The Prince and the Pauper is decisively plausible; as Twain explains, "It may have happened, it may not have happened: but it could have happened." This first American edition was published shortly after the London and Montreal first editions.