First English Edition of Two Years Before the Mast
DANA, Richard Henry, Jr. Two Years Before the Mast. A Personal Narrative of Life at Sea. London: Edward Moxon , 1841.
First English edition. Large octavo. 124 pp. Text printed in two columns.

Modern full blue cloth, gilt-stamped on spine. Blue endpapers. A fine copy.

"Dana, a man of great energy, wrote Two Years before the Mast and taught elocution at Harvard while attending classes there. His book, published in 1840, was an immediate success in the United States and in England, and it permanently influenced works about the sea, making their authors both more realistic about and also more cognizant of the common sailor's plight. About thirty books with titles echoing Dana's were published by 1860. The most notable literary beneficiary was Herman Melville, who in Chapter 24 of White-Jacket (1850) calls Two Years before the Mast "unmatchable" and whose Moby-Dick (1851) shows several traces of its influence. " (American National Biography).

BAL 4434. Grolier 100, #46 (for first edition). Zamorano 80, #26 (for first edition).

HBS # 66368 $1,000