First edition, first printing. Inscribed by the author. Publisher's original quarter brown cloth over illustrated paper-covered boards with titles in gilt to the spine. Each page with a black and white drawing accompanied by a rhyme, printed recto only. A very good copy, the binding square and firm with a fairly neat repair to the lower joint, the boards somewhat toned and with a little chipping and wear to the spine ends and board edges. The contents with a little cracking in a few places, a 2cm tear to the margin of one page, tanning to the endpapers and scattered foxing throughout are otherwise in very good order.
Inscribed by Lear in black ink to the half-title page: "F. C. Chattock / From the author / San Remo / March 18th 1877". The recipient, Frances Catherine Chattock was a friend of Lear, she was "a composer of hymns [who] sang his songs 'wonderfully well' in Lear's opinion", and notably self-published a setting of Lear's 'The Two Old Bachelors' in 1879 (Lodge, 'Inventing Edward Lear', 2019). A scarce signed copy of Lear's third book of nonsense with an appealing association, inscribed to a friend and musical collaborator at Lear's Villa in San Remo, a small city on the coast of Italy, where he lived until his death.
Stock code: 19229