How to recognize a first edition?

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How to recognize a first edition?

Postby Serkanner » 11 Apr 2008 05:56

Quite some time ago there was a website about Dune that was capable of explaining the difference between a number of different first editions of Dune.

As far as I know this website doesn't exist any more and possibly the knowledge has also been lost. I think it would be a good idea to "re-build" this knowledge about the first printings of our treasured Dune.

What I "know" is that:

"True" first edition was printed in 4 printings. ( rare )

There is the "Book Club" first edition. ( not so rare )

The two can be distinguished because of the difference in size of the book:

1st edition = app. 23 x 15 CM
Book Club = app. 21.5 x 14.5 CM

The dust jacket of the BC edition has "Book Club Edition " printed on it.

The "First Edition" I own doesn't mention anything about 1st, 2nd etc. printing. I am inclined to think this means its a "true"First edition, first print and therefore very rare. But I am not sure.

I hope others can add to this.

PS: The one I have is NOT the one Brian Herbert has lost ... the idiot!
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Postby orald » 11 Apr 2008 07:23

Of course, some pictures could come in handy. :)
In memory of Perach, who suffered and died needlessly.

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Postby Serkanner » 11 Apr 2008 07:40

orald wrote:Of course, some pictures could come in handy. :)




I have taken some pictures of my two copies. One is a Book Club Edition in a very good condition. The other one is a First Edition ( unknown print ) in an awful condition ( as an ex-library book ), but it does have emotional value.

The dust jacket of the Book Club edition

Full:

Image

Detail:

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Both Books together - the smaller one is the Book Club Edition:

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First Edition copyright sheet ( with library of congress card number ):

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Book Club copyright sheet ( no library of congress card number ):

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First Edition spelling error:

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Book Club correct spelling:

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Postby Tleilax Master B » 11 Apr 2008 09:49

Omphalos is da man in this regard. PM him and he will certainly have all your answers....
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Postby Serkanner » 11 Apr 2008 10:06

I hope Omphalos will make an appearance here and share his knowledge.
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Postby orald » 11 Apr 2008 10:23

*Need puking smiley for the design* And they don't even mention spice or its importance anywhere in that first page of the Book Club summary! :shock:

I'd have expected the pages to be a bit more yellowed after 40+ years, you know? Did you nick them from some museum? :P

Now scribble "to #1 son" on it and blackmail Brian for millions! :twisted:
In memory of Perach, who suffered and died needlessly.

I wish I could have been with you that one last time.
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Postby Serkanner » 11 Apr 2008 10:31

orald wrote:*Need puking smiley for the design* And they don't even mention spice or its importance anywhere in that first page of the Book Club summary! :shock:

I'd have expected the pages to be a bit more yellowed after 40+ years, you know? Did you nick them from some museum? :P

Now scribble "to #1 son" on it and blackmail Brian for millions! :twisted:


:lol: ...


I honestly bought them. The Book Club version for about $ 50,00 and the battered first edition for a mere $ 20,00 I also managed to lay my hands on the other five volumes in hard back first editions for only $ 80,00 in total.

The thing I really miss is an autographed version of any of the books.

On the internet I found an autographed first edition for sale for the small amount of $ 12.000,00 :shock: ... there is a weird thing though with this book. I know Frank always signed books and then crossed out the printed name. In this book Frank forgot to cross out his printed name, or this seller tries to sell a forged autograph.
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Postby orald » 11 Apr 2008 11:21

Hmm, sounds fishy. I don't think FH would've forgot it if he did it constantly, that's like he'd forget to write his last name.
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Postby Omphalos » 11 Apr 2008 11:32

Ill have to look at my notes wehn I get home. The general rule of thumb is that any book marked "First Edition" by Chilton is just that. The real first edition hardbacks are bound in blue moroccan leather. The BCE's, of which there appear to be trillions out there, are bound in red letherette hardboards. I have heard of first edition, later printings coming in green boards, but I have not seen any. I think I have the ISBN at home though. IIRC there were five or so printings of the original first edition, each one noted with a different ISBN only, and with no individual notation of the printing number on the title page.

The BCE's are worth about $25 - $50 USD, more if signed. That green book you have is almost certainly a library rebound. In other words, it probably was a library copy that was so used and abused that the library got it rebound by a library binding service. Those services usually dont use hardboards with designs on them though. To tell the truth, those hardboards look a bit like the kind that David Hartwell used to use with his Gregg Press books, but I dont think they ever publised a version of Dune (though IIRC Hartwell did proof it for Herbert). I also note that it has a seriel stamp in it, so its probably an ex-library copy.

Ill look at home for my notes, but honestly, the best thing to do is to contact Chilton and ask them. They are still a going operation, and IIRC they have a firm historian there.
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Postby Mandy » 11 Apr 2008 14:08

I read my BCE until it fell apart. My mom was in the Book of the Month club, when I was a little kid.. no telling how many years it sat on the shelf before my dad told me I should read it.
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Postby Omphalos » 25 Apr 2008 02:08

Sorry Serkanner. I forgot about this thread until tonight. Funny though, it feels like I posted here just a day or two ago. I guess that is what age does to you, huh?

AFAI have been able to learn, there were nine printings in Chilton's original edition, not counting the numerous BCE's, which they also ran. Here is how the first nine printings of the first edition of Dune are marked:

1: 1965 (blue boards) (Philadelphia, Toronto Ambassador Books) $5.95
2: April 1968 (green boards) $5.95
3: November 1970 (red boards) (Philadephia, Ontario) $5.95
4: Dec 1972 (red boards)
5: 567890 432109876 $7.95 (red boards)
6: 67890 43210987 $7.95 (red boards) (Radnor PA, Don Mills)
7: 7890 43210987 $7.95 (Radnor PA)
8: 890 43210 $10.95
9: 9012345 7654321 $12.95

I have seen many of these, but not all (I have not seen 2, 4 or 8 ). Some of the notes come from someone else I met on line who told me that they had them all, and e-mailed me pictures, so the content in the list above looks accurate to me. I'm trying to find copies of some of those that I have not seen to verify all the info here, and if I ever do, Ill update this post. I have confirmed with Chilton's historian (who is no longer at that company) and with a historian at Reed Elsevier, who now owns Chilton's rights from 1985 back, that there are only nine printings of the first edition by Chilton. The first four printings of Dune are explicitly stated. For example, the fourth printing reads "Fourth printing, December 1972." The 5th retains "First Edition" language, but also has the number line.

Everything else by Chilton is a BCE. You will know these books right away as the feel significantly lighter than they should feel for a book of that bulk.

I have a matrix of cover measurements around here somewhere, but I cannot locate it.

If you are interested in doing a little sleuthing, and especially if you have a Polish friend, check out this site:

I should have added this to the secondary sources list before tonight, but I forgot. Anyway, many editions are noted there, and if you stare at it long enough, you should figure out how to identify them based on photos alone. A guy named Kwisatz on DN maintains this site, IIRC, but I have not seen him around for some time. If you have questions about the site, contact him.

Another user at T(A)U, Tanzeelat, has the big commercial bibliography by a guy named Levack. That resource has photos of all editions and printings that the bibliographer was able to identify (and actually lay his hands on), so if you have a specific question you may want to run it by him. Here is a link to the Levack book:

Omphalos on T(A)U wrote:Levack, Daniel (with annotations by Willard, Mark), Dune Master: A Frank Herbert Bibliography. 1988, Meckler Publishing, Westport, Conn. ISBN not printed on item. (This is a commercial bibliography, and is reviewed here).

It is available in some large university libraries (here in the US, of course) but you may be able to locate one where you are if you want to see it for yourself. Its very expensive otherwise.

Stephensen-Payne in his bibliography lists only four editions, and has no page marking data at all. Perhaps you original information about the number of printings by Chilton came from this source? If you are interested, I can give you Phil Stephensen-Payne's e-mail address and you can send him a note to ask if he has any more detailed information about original printings since he published in the 1980's. He may, and I have not asked him yet.

Based on what I see there, it looks to me like your green library re-bind is in fact a first/first, though I am confused why it does not say "First Printing," as the second, third and fourth all do. Though it would have little value on the collector's market (at least relatively speaking - It would fetch more than $50 I think, while the BCE is probably valueless in that state), it is what it is to us, and that makes it a treasure. The BCE is not really worthy of fretting over at all, IMHO, but I'm glad that you have it if you are too.
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Postby Serkanner » 25 Apr 2008 05:13

Wow! That is a whole lot more information then I expected. Thank you very much Omphalos for taking the time to write this all down. I hope that, besides me, other will also benefit from this information.

I am not sure where I got the info form about there being four prints of the first edition. At the time I didn't save that type of information when I stumbled upon it. I must have been of the impression that site would always remain on-line. :?

When I read your post and compare it with the info I remember reading before, I am also coming to the conclusion I indeed have a First/First. Although its current state is abysmal and will not be to any value ( I suppose ) to any collector; to me it is in-valuable. This book being one of a batch of a few thousand holds for me the promise of the legendary book it later became.

I am also very happy with the BCE I have. They are not easy to find here in Europe and because of its very good condition it looks great in my Dune bookcase. I have a special bookcase dedicated to Dune with all the prints I have as well as the computer games, board games, movies, movie poster ... and of course the DUNE perfume by Christan Dior


:lol:


EDIT: I have managed to open the "Polish" site ... it is from the Czech Republic however :wink:

EDIT2:

Based on what I see there, it looks to me like your green library re-bind is in fact a first/first, though I am confused why it does not say "First Printing," as the second, third and fourth all do.


I have been pondering about this a bit. It would make sense though that the first print of the first edition doesn't state it specifically.

At the time Chilton took quite a gamble by printing this book. The first print batch contained only a few thousand books because they were far from sure they would sell them.

I can imagine that they started mentioning a second, third and fourth print when they indeed started printing those because the book did sell. I will see what Brian Herbert tells about this in his biography.
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Postby Omphalos » 25 Apr 2008 11:44

Serkanner wrote:EDIT: I have managed to open the "Polish" site ... it is from the Czech Republic however :wink:

:oops:

Stupid fucking Americans.

Serkanner wrote:Wow! That is a whole lot more information then I expected. Thank you very much Omphalos for taking the time to write this all down. I hope that, besides me, other will also benefit from this information.


No problem, Serkanner. Glad you found it helpful.

Serkanner wrote:I have been pondering about this a bit. It would make sense though that the first print of the first edition doesn't state it specifically.

At the time Chilton took quite a gamble by printing this book. The first print batch contained only a few thousand books because they were far from sure they would sell them.

I can imagine that they started mentioning a second, third and fourth print when they indeed started printing those because the book did sell. I will see what Brian Herbert tells about this in his biography.


You are probably right, but Chilton ordinarily prints auto repair manuals, and its very important to be able to check which edition you have with technical books. I have three Chiltons from the 70's and one from the 80's in my book case, and the two that are first edition are clearly marked also, "first edition, first printing." It may be that the did the novels that Sterling Lanier printed differently (they did one other fantasy book, and Lanier wrote and printed a few of his own SF books on the Chilton presses), but I am confused as to why.

Regardless, the proof is in the pudding. Your edition clearly states the necessary Canadian printing data, and IIRC that is the way you clearly identify a first/first, so I still believe that is what you have there.

Serkanner wrote:I am also very happy with the BCE I have. They are not easy to find here in Europe and because of its very good condition it looks great in my Dune bookcase. I have a special bookcase dedicated to Dune with all the prints I have as well as the computer games, board games, movies, movie poster ... and of course the DUNE perfume by Christan Dior


You should post us a pic of your Herbert shrine. :wink:
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Postby Omphalos » 26 Apr 2008 02:18

One other difference in BCE's is that the price is not printed on the outside part of the inner left flap, as it is in commercial books. This is pretty much universally true of all BCE's, even ones where "Book Club Edition" is not printed at the bottom of that same flap.
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Postby inhuien » 26 Apr 2008 10:51

What a great collection of Covers that site has thanks Omphalas, even better than.... was it caveof birds or usal.net, ach you know the one i mean.

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Postby Omphalos » 26 Apr 2008 16:20

There is an "Art" subcategory over in my Herbert Secondary Sources List over on T(A)U that has links to all the various sites (three, I think) that give the covers.
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Postby inhuien » 27 Apr 2008 04:44

Thanking ye, I'll have a look later :)
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Postby Omphalos » 27 Apr 2008 10:54

Sorry. I just looked and I have not put them up yet. Ill try to find them today and get them up there.
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Re: How to recognize a first edition?

Postby Seeker » 16 Nov 2010 19:58

I know I'm bumping an old thread, but

FINALLY. I found a list of what's what for Dune printings. Turns out I have a fine copy of the Chilton book FIFTH edition. Everyone was telling me since it was a "red book" it had to be a BCE, but everything I could find indicated otherwise. Thanks!

I'd been wanting to sell it, but the BCE stigma kept me from doing so. Now I can weigh in with confidence.

May I take the identification information content and print it somewhere else for another couple people who've asked the same question?
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Re: How to recognize a first edition?

Postby Omphalos » 16 Nov 2010 20:41

f
Seeker wrote:May I take the identification information content and print it somewhere else for another couple people who've asked the same question?


Why dont you just give them the link? That way some Dunies can come to a great Dune forum.
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Re: How to recognize a first edition?

Postby Seeker » 16 Nov 2010 21:16

Will do.
Thanks for the great information.
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Re: How to recognize a first edition?

Postby SandRider » 17 Nov 2010 11:18

I know I'm bumping an old thread, but


we like that here -
much better than starting a new thread on the same topic,
and burying the information already posted .... so ...

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Re: How to recognize a first edition?

Postby D Pope » 06 Jan 2011 14:50

I found some more great info on Dune, sorry i'm no good at transferring the pictures.

http://www.fedpo.com/BookDetail.php/Dune
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Re: How to recognize a first edition?

Postby D Pope » 06 Jan 2011 15:02

If anyone has info for the books after Dune, plaese share it!
I haven't searched past Messiah yet, all i've gotten is prior to 1976 it won't say first edition but prints after the first will say second impression, third- and so on.
Leto II is gone for good, except for OM. The "pearl" was just that; a miniscule portion of what Leto was, and not a compressed version of the whole. The pearl that the worms have do not make them Leto, or in any way similar to him.
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Re: How to recognize a first edition?

Postby Kwisatz » 08 Feb 2011 19:36

As I said earlier today in another topic about our FH collection I'd like to share my knowledge about all 9 printings of Dune by Chilton.

1: 1965. $5.95 (blue boards) (Philadelphia, Toronto Ambassador Books). Only first edition stated, with no indication of the printing, this could be a spelling error in Muad'Dib (Maud'Dib) title of 2nd part of novel (but according to Fullerton Archives that was a working title of Dune). This 'error' is in all 9 printings (BCE has the correct version though). Grey endpapers (only in 1st printing), 4 lines on the bottom of back flap (only in 1st). No ISBN number.
2: April 1968. $5.95 (green boards) (Philadephia, Ontario) - Second printing - stated below first edition text, 2 lines on the bottom of back flap. No ISBN number.
3: November 1970. $5.95 (red boards) (Philadephia, Ontario) - Third printing stated below text of second printing. ISBN number: 0-8019-5077-5 (only on copyright page).
4: Dec 1972 $5.95 (red boards). Forth printing stated below third printing text. Rest details the same as in 3rd printing.
5: 567890 432109876 $7.95 (red boards) (Radnor, Pennsylvania). Only stated 'first edition' and number line below with no indication of printing in text. ISBN number also on front flap, 2 lines on the bottom of back flap but different from the printings 2-4.
6: 67890 43210987 $7.95 (red boards) (Radnor PA, Don Mills). No text 'first edition', only number line (the same case in printings 7-9). Added location in copyrights - Don Mills). Rest the same as in 5th printing.
7: 7890 43210987 $7.95 (red boards) (Radnor PA, Don Mills). Added 'ISBN' text to the front flap. Added ISBN number on the bottom right of backcover.
8: 890 43210 $10.95 (red boards) (Radnor PA, Don Mills). Apart of number line and new price - rest is the same as in 7th.
9: 9012345 7654321 $12.95 (red boards) (Radnor PA, Don Mills). New layout of the copyrights, new price and number line obviously.

Rest is history!

And now some photos:

1st printing

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2nd printing

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3rd printing

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4th printing

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5th printing

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6th printing

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7th printing

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8th printing

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9th printing

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Last edited by Kwisatz on 21 Jun 2011 06:31, edited 1 time in total.
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