The Piazza Tales – Herman Melville
‘The Piazza Tales’ is a collection of short stories by Herman Melville. The volume contains the following stories:
The Lightning-Rod Man
The Piazza Tales.
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Some background on The Piazza Tales (from Wikipedia):
In addition to the five stories, Melville wrote an introductory story for which the volume was titled. Scholar Douglas Robillard believes that this served the purpose of making the stories to appear „more closely joined than they actually are.“
The contract for the book was signed on 17 March 1856, it was advertised on 5 April as „in press“ and should have been available by 15 May–though a copy was deposited for copyright on May 20. The volume was printed by Miller & Holman, Printers and Stereotypers, of New York, as a duodecimo volume of 431 pages, excluding seven pages of advertisements for other product by the same publishers. Biographer Parker observes that to reach that number of pages the book was padded out by leaving excessive white space. The front and back covers were ornamented by a border of rules and rosettes. The spine displayed the title, names of author and publishers stamped in gold, and the volume was priced at $1.00. In June the book was advertised together with another as „TWO GOOD SUMMER BOOKS“.