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Annotated Reference Guide to Collectible Books

Browning, Robert

‘We All Want To Like’: Robert Browning

Robert Browning is one of those curious mixtures of modern sensibility with a Romantic’s soul so commonly found in the nineteenth century. Like others of his time (Darwin, Alexander Bell), Browning’s personality was one that veered towards the new science and technology that was starting to be born in the wake of the mass industrialisation of Europe. His voice was one of the first to be recorded on wax cylinder, reciting his poem How They Brought The Good News From Ghent To Aix, which is now regarded as the first recording to be aired after the original speaker’s death (in 1889).

Robert Browning’s work however, cannot be much different from his progressivist and modern interests. He wrote poems, soliloquys and monologues as well as epic verse, much in the style of the Victorians and the Romantics. His earliest works paid a great tribute to Shelley in particular, whilst his work Paracelsus was devoted to semi mystical subjects such as alchemy and religion. Browning’s work itself has a whimsical edge, placing it in that fine British tradition that leads to nonsense rhymes, nursery tales, or folk sayings.

His whimsical nature however, did not extend to his own personal beliefs, as he was a staunch opponent of Spiritualism and Mediumship, which he saw as an unabashed fraud. Browning married the very well respected poet Elizabeth Barrett, whose fame eclipsed his own, yet together they formed a happy union. Later commentators – particularly the modernists Anthony Burgess, T.S. Elliot have later said of Browning that he is a poet whom they all deeply admire and ‘want to like’ but whose work remains troublesomely insubstantial. Perhaps one of Browning’s lasting achievements is to remain elusive, and paradoxical to modern ears.

For the collector, the most sought-for item would be his very early work, the Paracelsus, 1835 from Effingham Wilson. The First Edition is still available with an attractive red hard cover, for as little as seven hundred US dollars. The volume may not age well or increase in value by a considerable amount, so be sure to choose an edition in good to near mint as possible condition.

Browning, Robert. Paracelsus. Effingham Wilson (1835). Signed On Half-Title By Arabella Shore London Fitzroy

Browning, Robert . STRAFFORD. Printed for Longman (1837). An Historical Tragedy.

Browning, Robert . SORDELLO . Edward Moxon (1840). 500 Copies.

Browning, Robert . Christmas-Eve and Easter-Day. Chapman & Hall (1850).

Browning, Robert. Two Poems. Chapman & Hall (1854). The Two Poems Are "A Plea For Ragged Schools" By Elizabeth Barrett Browning And "The Twins" By Robert Browning; 300 Copies.

Browning, Robert . Men and Women . Ticknor and Fields, Boston (1856). 2 Volumes; Including "Love Among The Ruins," "Fra Lippo Lippi," "Any Wife To Any Husband" And "Andrea Del Sarto.".

Browning, Robert . Dramatis Personae. Chapman & Hall (1864). Comprised Of Eighteen Poems Includes "Caliban Upon Setebos", Which Examines The Nature Of Primitive Man, Drawing On Darwins On The Origin Of Species, "Rabbi Ben Ezra", "Mr. Sludge, The Medium".

Browning, Robert . The Poetical Works of Robert Browning . Smith Elder and Co (1868). 6 Volumes.

Browning, Robert . The Ring and the Book . Smith, Elder and Co. (1869). 4 Volumes

Browning, Robert. Fifine At The Fair. Smith, Elder, & Co. (1872).

Browning, Robert. The Poetical Works of Robert Browning. Smith, Elder and Co. (1872). 6 Volumes.

Browning, Robert . The Ring and The Book. Smith, Elder, & Co. (1872). 4 Volumes.

Browning, Robert . Red Cotton Night-Cap Country. Smith, Elder & Co. (1873). Turf And Towers.

Browning, Robert . Pacchiarotto and How he Worked in Distemper. Smith, Elder, & Co. (1876). With Other Poems.

Browning, Robert. The Agamemnon of Aeschylus. Smith, Elder & Company (1877).

Browning, Robert. La Saisiaz . Smith Elder & Co. (1878). The Two Poets Of Croisic.

Browning, Robert. Dramatic Idyls. Smith, Elder, & Co. (1880). Second Series; 2 Volumes.

Browning, Robert. Selections From the Poetical Works . Smith, Elder, & Co. (1880). 2 Volume; Two Volumes Are Entitled First Series And Second Series.

Browning, Robert . The Poetical Works of Elizabeth Barrett Browning. Smith, Elder, & Co. (1882).

Browning, Robert . A Selection From The Poetry Of Elizabeth Barrett Browning. Smith, Elder, & Co. (1884). First Series

Browning, Robert . The Poetical Works of Robert Browning . Smith, Elder & Company (1884). 2 Volumes; Volumes Including "Childe Roland To The Dark Tower Came".

Browning, Robert . Dramatic Lyrics. Houghton Miffin, Boston, (1887). The Return Of The Druses; A Blot In The Scutcheon; Colombes Birthday; Dramatic Romances; A Souls Tragedy; Luria.

Browning, Robert . Parleyings With Certain People of Importance in Their Day. Smith, Elder (1887). To Wit, Bernard De Mandeville, Daniel Bartoli, Christopher Smart, George Bubb Dodington, Francis Furini, Gerard De Lairesse, And Charles Avison; Introduced By A Dialogue Between Apollo And The Fates; Concluded By Another Between John Fust And His Friends.

Browning, Robert . Poetical Works of Robert Browning. Smith, Elder, & Co. (1888). 17 Volume Set.

Browning, Robert. The Pied Piper of Hamelin. G. Routledge and Sons Ltd (1888). 35 Color Illustrations By Greenaway; Engraved And Printed In Colours By Edmund Evans.

Browning, Robert . The Poetical Works of Robert Browning. Smith, Elder & Co. (1888). 17 Volumes; 250 Copies.

Browning, Robert . L'Homme la Flte.. Hachette (1889). Interprtation De G. Girardin; Illustrations De Kate Greenaway.

Browning, Robert . The Poetical Works of Robert Browning. Smith, Elder & Co (1889). 17 Volumes; Edited By Morse Peckham.

Browning, Robert. Asolando. Smith Elder & Co. (1890). Fancies And Facts.

Browning, Robert. The Poetical Works. Macmillan and Co. (1894). 17 Volumes; 250 Copies; Includes Pauline-Sordello, Men And Women, Pippa Passes, Dramatic Romances, Dramatic Lyrics, Dramatis Personae, The Ring And The Book, Fifine At The Fair, Aristophanes Apology, Asolando And Dramtic Idylls

Browning, Robert. The Complete Works. Fred DeFau (1898). Edited By Charlotte Porter And Helen A. Clarke; Camberwell Edition. (12 Volume Set In Wooden Box)

Browning, Robert. The Pied Piper of Hamelin. Harry Quilter (1898). A Childs Story Set Forth In A Series Of Designs And Decorative Borders By Harry Quilter, Barrister-At-Law And Written In Ornamental Text By Mary His Wife; Printed By Lemercier; Illustrated Throughout By Harry Quilter; 100 Copies.

Browning, Robert. Dramatic Romances and Lyrics. Ballantyne Press (1899). Decorated With Woodcut Border And Initials By Charles Ricketts; 210 Copies.

Browning, Robert . The Complete Works. George D. Sproul (1899). Charlotte Porter And Helen A. Clarke (Editors); Twelve Volumes Complete; Total 750 Copies; 275 Copies Signed By The Editors

Browning, Robert . The Poetical Works of Robert Browning With Portraits . Smith, Elder and Co. (1899). 6 Volumes; With Introductions And Notes; With Portraits.

Browning, Robert. The Last Ride Together. G.P. Putnams Sons (1906). Illustrations By Frederick Simpson Coburn And Alta Fattey; Margaret Armstrong Binding Collection; 940 Copies; 100 Copies On Japanese Vellum.

Browning, Robert . The Poetical Works. Smith, Elder and Co. (1907). 17 Volumes; Edited By Augustine Birrell.

Browning, Robert . Men and Women . The Doves Press, Hammersmith (1908). 2 Volumes; Total 263 Copies And 13 Copies On Vellum.; Flourished (And Signed) By Edward Johnston.

Browning, Robert. Dramatis Personae. Doves Press, Hammersmith (1910). Dramatic Romances And Lyrics; Limited Edition, Total 265 Copies; Illustrated By Eleanor Fortescue Brickdale; Printed By T.J. Cobden-Sanderson.

Browning, Robert. The Pied Piper of Hamlin. Rand, McNally & Co.,Chicago and New York (1910). A ChildS Story; Van Dyck (Illustrator); Illustrated In Colour And Monochrome By Hope Dunlap.

Browning, Robert. Three Lyrics by Robert Browning. Gamble Hinged Music Co and New York (1910). Set To Music By Daniel Protheroe; Each Separately Dedicated: "Ah, Love, But A Day" To Mr. H. Evan Williams; "I Send My Heart Up To Thee" To Mr. Evert Pieters; "The Years At The Spring" To Mr. Daniel Beddoe.

Browning, Robert . The Works of Robert Browning. London Smith Elder & Co. (1917). Centenary Edition In 10 Volumes; Limited To 26 Copies On Vellum And 500 Copies On Antique Laid Paper; Illustrated With 10 Black-And-White Engraved Portraits Of Browning By Emery Walker After Various Artists As Frontispieces; With A Preface And Introductions To Each Work By F.G. Kenyon, C.D., D.Litt.

Browning, Robert . The Pied Piper Of Hamelin . George G. Harrap & Co. Ltd (1934). Illustrated By Arthur Rackham; Total 410 Copies; Only 400 Copies For Sale. Four Color Plates And Fourteen Drawings In Black And White (Including One Double-Page).

Browning, Robert . The Poetical Works of Robert Browning. Oxford University Press (1944). Including His Beloved "The Pied Piper Of Hamelin", "Childe Roland To The Dark Tower Came", And "Porphyrias Lover"

Browning, Robert . My Last Dutchess and Other Poems. Caedmon Records (1965).

Browning, Robert . The Works of Robert Browning. Barnes and Noble, USA (1966). With Introductions By F. G. Kenyon; 10 Volumes.