The World's Tragedy. Aleister CROWLEY.
The World's Tragedy.

The World's Tragedy.

NP: Morton Press, ND (circa 1974). First Edition Thus. Softcover. Small octavo. (8 x 5 5/8 inches). (vi) + xliv (+vi) + 138pp (printed on rectos only) (+ vipp. adverts). Simply bound in plain beige wrappers. Apparently a UNIQUE copy, made by Ray Sherwin of the Morton Press, from whose library it originally came. "The World's Tragedy," was originally privately printed in Paris in 1910 in an edition of 100 copies, most of which were said to have been destroyed on account of its frank discussion of homosexuality and scathing commentary on Christianity.
In the late 1970s Sherwin, who was then operating the Morton Press, had access to Jane Wolfe's copy, which is in the collection of Gerald Yorke. Sherwin photocopied it, and reprinted the Preface *only* on beige paper, as a 50 page booklet. However, he actually photocopied the entire book, including Crowley's presentation inscription to Jane Wolfe, two pages of notes by Gerald Yorke, the advertisements and a note at the rear. He evidently combined one of his booklets of the Preface with a photocopy (?) of the complete rest of the text, and had them bound together thus, effectively making a simple facsimile of the entire work, presumably for his own use. It was of course almost impossible to access the text of "The World's Tragedy" at the time as first editions were of the utmost rarity, and it had never been reprinted (the book was finally reprinted by Israel Regardie and the Falcon Press in 1985). Aside from running the Morton Press, Sherwin (b. 1952) was the publisher of "The New Equinox", an author in his own right, and of course one of the originators of magical systems known as Chaos Magic. This volume was acquired by Clive Harper when Sherwin disposed of part of his library in 1992. From the collection of Clive Harper with his discreet book-label neatly tipped in at the rear. Harper is well- known as the bibliographer of Austin Osman Spare, for updating the Aleister Crowley bibliography in the 2011 Teitan Press collection of Gerald Yorke's writings, and as someone who has lent his expertise to numerous other publications. As noted the first 50 pages are printed on buff stock (as was the booklet), with the remainder being on ordinary white copy paper. The book was somewhat tightly cropped in the binding, and although the text does not appear to have been affected, Crowley's inscription, Yorke's notes, and the advertisements at the rear - all of which extended slightly into the margins - have had some small loss courtesy of the binder's guillotine. Almost certainly a unique copy. Rather basic production values, otherwise VG+ condition. Item #66619


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