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The King in Yellow by Robert Chambers

Below is the generic description of the book

The King in Yellow is a book of short stories by American writer Robert W. Chambers, first published by F. Tennyson Neely in 1895. The book is named after a fictional play with the same title which recurs as a motif through some of the stories. The first half of the book features highly esteemed weird stories, and the book is described by S.T. Joshi as a classic in the field of the supernatural. There are ten stories, the first four of which, "The Repairer of Reputations", "The Mask", "In the Court of the Dragon" and "The Yellow Sign", mention The King in Yellow, a forbidden play which induces despair or madness in those who read it. "The Yellow Sign" inspired a film of the same name released in 2001. The British first edition was published by Chatto & Windus in 1895 (316 pages).


These are all First Edition First Printings. I have all these editions in my collection, but I always believed that the RED Tennyson edition was a 1st/1st and then I found an exact copy which sold from the Jerry Weist Collection in 2012 confirming it a first printing.

Recently I have come across another First Edition/First Printing of the King In Yellow.

King In Yellow - Chatto & Windus
Black King Chatto
King In Yellow - Tennyson Neely
Black King
The King in Yellow - Tennyson Neely Salamander
Salamander
The King in Yellow - Tennyson Neely Red Cover
Red Cover
The King in Yellow - Tennyson Neely Blue with Red and White Cover
Blue Red White Cover

I am now starting to believe that some, or all, of the books below are either First Edition Later Printings or Variation of the First Edition which would make them TRUE firsts.
The King in Yellow -
Tennyson Neely Butterfly
Blue Red White Cover
Front Cover
butterfly
and Back Cover
The King In Yellow - Tenneson Neely Blue Cover
Blue Red White Cover
The King In Yellow - Tenneson Neely Border Cover
Border Cover



Taken from Wikipedia

The imaginary play The King in Yellow has two acts and at least three characters: Cassilda, Camilla, and "The Stranger", who may or may not be the title character. Chambers' story collection excerpts sections from the play to introduce the book as a whole, or individual stories. For example, "Cassilda's Song" comes from Act 1, Scene 2 of the play:

Along the shore the cloud waves break,

The twin suns sink behind the lake,

The shadows lengthen

In Carcosa



Strange is the night where black stars rise,

And strange moons circle through the skies,

But stranger still is

Lost Carcosa.



Songs that the Hyades shall sing,

Where flap the tatters of the King,

Must die unheard in

Dim Carcosa.



Song of my soul, my voice is dead,

Die thou, unsung, as tears unshed

Shall dry and die in

Lost Carcosa.



The short story "The Mask" is introduced by an excerpt from Act 1, Scene 2d:

Camilla: You, sir, should unmask.

Stranger: Indeed?

Cassilda: Indeed it's time. We have all laid aside disguise but you.

Stranger: I wear no mask.

Camilla: (Terrified, aside to Cassilda.) No mask? No mask!



It is also stated, in the "The Repairer of Reputations," that the final moment of the first act involves the character of Cassilda on the streets, screaming in a horrified fashion, "Not upon Us, oh king! Not upon us!".[

All of the excerpts come from Act I. The stories describe Act I as quite ordinary, but reading Act II drives the reader mad with the "irresistible" revealed truths. "The very banality and innocence of the first act only allowed the blow to fall afterward with more awful effect." Even seeing the first page of the second act is enough to draw the reader in: "If I had not caught a glimpse of the opening words in the second act I should never have finished it [...]" ("The Repairer of Reputations").

Chambers usually gives only scattered hints of the contents of the full play, as in this extract from "The Repairer of Reputations":

He mentioned the establishment of the Dynasty in Carcosa, the lakes which connected Hastur, Aldebaran and the mystery of the Hyades. He spoke of Cassilda and Camilla, and sounded the cloudy depths of Demhe, and the Lake of Hali. "The scolloped tatters of the King in Yellow must hide Yhtill forever," he muttered, but I do not believe Vance heard him. Then by degrees he led Vance along the ramifications of the Imperial family, to Uoht and Thale, from Naotalba and Phantom of Truth, to Aldones, and then tossing aside his manuscript and notes, he began the wonderful story of the Last King.

A similar passage occurs in "The Yellow Sign", in which two protagonists have read The King in Yellow:

Night fell and the hours dragged on, but still we murmured to each other of the King and the Pallid Mask, and midnight sounded from the misty spires in the fog-wrapped city. We spoke of Hastur and of Cassilda, while outside the fog rolled against the blank window-panes as the cloud waves roll and break on the shores of Hali.
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