Printer’s Device/Type

The print type is Baskerville.  Baskerville font was created by John Baskerville in the 1700s.  Baskerville was a type-designer and master printer living in England.  His first printed book was an edition of Virgil in 1757 (Monotype, 2014).




There are a few decorations in this book.  The first is on the cover and it is part of the printing.  There are three leaves between the title and the author’s name.


The second decoration is an autograph from the famous actor Warner Baxter.  He was an actor in the 1920s-1940s.  His first major film, In Old Arizona, earned him an Oscar as the Cisco Kid, in 1928.  Other movies that he was in include Penthouse (1933) and a series called Crime Doctor (1943).  After a lobotomy to relieve his arthritis pain, he died of pneumonia in 1951 (IMDb, 2014).

IMG_20140408_123854_950  baxter

Although this is my book, I don’t know the provenance.  Therefore I have no idea how Baxter came to sign this book.  There are several possibilities.  It could have been his book, or he could have signed it for a fan who only had the book on them when they met.

The third decoration has been erased, but you can still see where the pencil etched into the paper.  On one side it says, “Warner Baxter was a movie actor in the 1920s.”  On the other side is written, “10.00”



This edition of A Farewell to Arms has a black canvas covered board with the title/author/publisher information on a sticker on the spine and the title/author on the front.  The title sticker on the side is fading off on the edges.


This edition originally came with a dust jacket.  The one for my copy was lost along the way.



Ernest Hemingway’s book A Farewell to Arms, while slightly autobiographical, was not a story of his life.  Neither was it a book written about the horrors of the War.  Hemingway wrote what he knew about, World War I from the point of view of a wounded ambulance driver and the loss of a woman he loved.  His sparse prose and ability to accurately capture conversations catapulted him into a famous author.  Hemingway dedicated his life to writing “One true sentence” (Crisman, 1998).

Studying this book indepth has given me a greater appreciation, not only for my book, but also for Ernest Hemingway.  He was such an extraordinary person.  Although my copy is not in pristine condition, it is a beautiful copy; one with a story to tell outside of the actual story in the book.  Like the story Hemingway wrote, my copy of A Farewell to Arms will continue to live throughout history, a book to be passed down through the generations.


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