London: T. Fisher Unwin, 1898. Hardcover. FIRST ENGLISH EDITION. This is Maugham's uncommon second book. He apparently did not hold the book in high regard and tried to suppress its republication. It is an historical novel that takes place in Italy, and concerns itself with the weaknesses of the human condition. One sad quote: “One does not really feel much grief at other people's sorrows; one tries, and puts on a melancholy face, thinking oneself brutal for not caring more; but one cannot and it is better, for if one grieved too deeply at other people's tears, life would be unendurable; and every man has sufficient sorrows of his own without taking to heart his neighbour's.” In the original green cloth with gilt title to spine. Minor rubbing to boards and minor wear to spine ends. The text and endpages are slightly browned as is usual with this book. Includes bookplates of three previous owners to front endpage: A.S. Alexander, Eleanor Jacott, and Mark Samuels Lasner. Very good condition 303 pages plus 8 pages of ads. LIT/042108. Very good.