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The Black Monk and Other Stories by Anton Tchekhoff first UK edition 1903

The Black Monk and Other Stories by Anton Tchekhoff first UK edition 1903


London: Duckworth & Co., 1903


8vo., blue cloth, ruled and lettered in black to upper cover and spine, with device to foot; pp. [v], vi-ix, [iv], 2-302, [ii]; cloth a little rubbed and darkened, with spine ends compressed; endpapers browned, offset, and slightly foxed; a few spots, marks and corner creases within the text; edges a trifle dust soiled; a very sturdy copy, nonetheless. 


First UK edition, translated from the Russian by R. E. C. Long, who also provides the Preface. This example in a variant publisher’s cloth binding, lacking the four-page publisher’s catalogue sometimes found in other examples. 


Born in 1860, Tchekhoff began his career as a doctor, though he published a number of comic sketches and commentaries on everyday life in journals and newspapers in St Petersburg before he completed his education. The stories included in this collection are among the longest of his short works, and include In Exile, Two Tragedies, and Sleepyhead. Most, if not all of them, originally featured in St Petersburg journals. The title story is perhaps the most famous, and tells the tragic story of the final two years of life of an overworked scholar. 


Robert Edward Crozier Long was a noted Anglo-Irish journalist and translator who, in 1898, traveled to Russia to interview Tolstoy. The two became well acquainted, and the following year Long, already conversant in French, began to study Russian. He was one of the first to translate Tchekoff into English. 

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