[Seas and Oceans] Mathias Sandorf by Jules Verne. Illustrations by Férat. Paris, Collection Hetzel, 1885 (1896 for the hardback).
Large triple in-8°. Publisher's full percaline polychrome boards "with anchor back" and "with red headband". Engel bookbinder. Gilt edges. Anthracite blue endpapers. Printed by Gauthier-Villars. Catalogue "O" for 1896-1897.
Original illustrated edition and second board.
Some chips and traces of moisture on the first board. Otherwise a well-pinned and well-kept copy.
Here is a most interesting curiosity. In an article published in La Gazette de la librairie Monte Cristo n°5 (Dec. 2020), we came to the conclusion that the "anchor-backed" cartonnage by Mathias Sandorf would have appeared as early as 1896 - that is, at least two years before the version with the gilded sphere - and not in 1898 as Philippe Jauzac assumed in his work Jules Verne/Hetzel et les cartonnages illustrés. Moreover, this binding exists in two variants: one with "Col- lection Hetzel", at the bottom of the first plate, in a red band, and the other, in a black band, the one we all know. This version "with the red band", here it is. Jauzac was unaware of its existence, as were we until this copy appeared in the Jacob collection. This very first version of the cardboard "with the anchor back" had therefore and without any doubt, a very short existence. In view of its extreme rarity (after investigation, it apparently does not appear in any collection), we can even assume that it is a trial... which would greatly excuse its few defects!