London: Longmans, Green, and Company, 1881. First English Edition. Hardcover, professionally recased in green cloth with original black and gilt illustrative covers laid on. Good. Item #55
Buried Alive or Ten Years of Penal Servitude in Siberia (also known as The House of the Dead) by Fyodor Mikhaylovich Dostoyevsky. First edition and first of his writings to be translated in English. London: Longmans, Green, and Company, 1881. Translated from the Russian by the mysterious Marie von Thilo and ex libris Bishop Francis Ambrose Gregory, Abatoharanana, Madagascar, 1884. Professionally recased in green cloth with original black and gilt illustrative covers laid on. House of the Dead first appeared in two parts from 1861-1862 in Dostoevsky’s own literary journal Vremya. Published in two parts it saw immediate success. The novel is a thinly disguised memoir of Dostoevsky’s experiences and observations during his five-year exile and imprisonment in Siberia. Its publication would be the first in a long line of Russian “convict” novels. His suffering during those long years, beginning with his arrest and mock execution in December 1849 and not ending until his discharge from compulsory military service in 1859, would influence in his writing up until his death in 1881. This first English edition would be the only English translation of his work to appear during his lifetime. House of the Dead appeared in 1881 under the title Buried Alive and translated by the mysterious Marie Von Thilo of whom very little is known. J and R Maxwell published a new translation by Edward Sutherland under the title Prison Life in Siberia (1888). It would be another 25-years until Constance Garrett would publish her translation in 1915.