Moscow: Grif, 1905. Item #175
135,  pp. 20x16 cm. Contemporary half leather. The publisher’s original wrapper is preserved under the boards. Very good clean copy.
Rare. 1 of 1200 copies printed.
One of the most important Russian poetry books of the period. First edition of Alexander Blok’s (1880-1921) first book. Wrapper design by Vladimir Vladimirov.
Blok’s first book was printed by the symbolist publishing house ‘Grif’ and the idea for the title of this circle of poems was suggested
by Valery Briusov (1873-1924) who at the time was considered the patron of all Moscow poets and the leader of Symbolism. To avoid possible problems with censors the book was submitted to the censor committee in Nizhni Novgorod although it was printed in Moscow. Blok was already a well-known poet at the time but was printing poems only in periodicals. The collection of poems was divided into three sections: Stillness, Crossroads and Damage. The book was dedicated to Liubov’ Mendeleeva, daughter of Dmitri Mendeleev. She married Blok the same year.
WorldCat locates copies in libraries of Columbia, Yale, Harvard, Amherst, UC Berkley.