MAO ZE DONG. 1893-1976.
Mao Zhu Xi Yu Lu [Quotations of Chairman Mao]. [Shenyang Military District: Air Force Political Department, before December 1963?]
12mo (127 x 84 mm). , 7, [1 blank], 351 pp. Unsigned endorsement by Lin Biao printed in red. Original white wrappers printed in red. Spine reinforced, lower cover with stain, minor soiling and rubbing, pale dampstain to edge at front.
Provenance: Rong Li (ownership inscription to fore-edge).
EXTREMELY RARE, PROTOTYPE VERSION OF THE LITTLE RED BOOK, apparently issued some months before the mass production of this most influential of 20th century volumes. It is substantially different from the regular publication, bearing the same title and a single red star motif on the cover, but with completely different size and pagination, no portrait of Mao or epigraph from Karl Marx; and Lin Biao's endorsement unsigned and in regular characters. The wording of this endorsement also differs in that it is addressed to "Chairman Mao's good students" rather than "good soldiers" as it is normally seen. See following lot for a description of the fate of Lin Biao's endorsement. A rubber-stamp on the front cover and on endorsement states: "Gongyong Shuji" (Books for Public Use). The quotations are divided into five thematic divisions comprising 16 chapters and 64 sections.
While this prototype is not in most of the bibliographies, it is mentioned in Guo Dong Peng's "Outline for Cataloguing Mao Zedong's Works" (Harbin 2006, p 71) which identifies two different printings of 351 ppthe present, undated issue with no title-page and a version with an imprint reading as it appears in brackets above. There also exists a 351 pp edition dated May 1964. This edition will also be described for a forthcoming exhibition at the Grolier Club (November, 2014).