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The Consolation of Philosophy
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Apuleius, Lucius - The Golden Ass Limited Edition - ( Item 127540 )

Published in London by Folio Society. 2015. First Thus. Fine Hardback. No inscriptions or bookplates. Near Fine slipcase. Some uneven fading to panels of slipcase. Illustrated by Quentin Blake. Introduced by James Wood. Translated by E. J. Kenney. A new limited edition of Apuleius' enormously entertaining and immensely influential novel, featuring exuberant illustrations by Quentin Blake. Each copy is signed and numbered by the artist. 256 pages. 11¼" x 8½". 46 illustrations by Quentin Blake. Limited to 1,000 copies of which this is number 97; limitation page signed and numbered by Quentin Blake. Set in Poliphilus and Blado. Printed on Old Mill Stucco. Bound in Indian goatskin blocked in gold foil. Gilded top edge. Gold-blocked slipcase. The 2nd-century writer and orator Apuleius had a chequered but ultimately glorious career which took him from his native North Africa to Athens and Rome, and from being tried for witchcraft to being appointed a priest of the Roman imperial cult. To the ancients he was primarily famous as a neo-Platonist thinker, but to later centuries his reputation rests on a work which has had an incalculable impact on the development of Western literature – The Golden Ass. The Golden Ass tells the tale of a certain Lucius, a young man who – rather like his creator – leads an itinerant life full of action and incident which ultimately lands him in trouble. His curiosity to discover the secrets of witchcraft (the biographical echoes continue) results in his metamorphosis into an ass. The novel then follows its unfortunate hero through a series of largely bruising, humiliating and hilarious exploits until he is restored to human form through the intervention of the goddess Isis. This meandering plot is punctuated with a number of inserted stories which establish close thematic parallels with the main narrative. The most substantial and best known of these is the tale of Cupid and Psyche, in which Psyche’s disastrous inquisitiveness, subsequent sufferings and eventual salvation echo Lucius’ story. In the novel’s final double twist, Lucius’ adventures are reinterpreted in a religious and providential light, while the identity of the narrator apparently switches from Lucius to Apuleius himself – the novel’s final transformation.

Price £ 464.00 (inc UK postage)                 Other items you may like                 Others by the same author

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