First Edition Points of Gurdjieff’s Meetings With Remarkable Men

There can be confusion around identifying the true first edition of Meetings with Remarkable Men because a later edition was issued which seems to state it is the first printing. Here are details on how to identify the true first edition.

Meetings with Remarkable Men by G.I. Gurdjieff was first published in 1963 in London by RKP and in New York by Dutton. I assume the London came first. The Dutton edition states “First published in the U.S.A, 1963” and “Printed in Great Britain”. Dutton reprinted at least three times. I have seen Dutton printings that state “fourth printing”.

Sometime, I assume later than the fourth Dutton printing, in the late 60’s or early 70’s it was reprinted by University Books, a publisher specializing in inexpensive reprints of metaphysical, occult and religious titles. The University books edition appears to have used the first Dutton plates with very minor modifications. The only difference in the printing is that the University books edition states “Printed in the U.S.A.” at the bottom of the copyright page and there is a standard “No part of this book may be reproduced…” blurb in the middle of the page. The title page states “Dutton/1963” and the copyright page still states “First published in the U.S.A, 1963” with no other printing information. So it is understandable that many people mistake it for the first. 

The only other differences are in the binding, the paper size and quality, and the jacket.

  • The first Dutton has “Dutton” printed on the bottom of the jacket spine. The University Press edition has no publisher on the jacket spine.
  • The Dutton has quotations from reviews, most notably, including Frank Lloyd Wright, on the back of the jacket. The University Press edition has a listing of books from the “Library of the Mystic Arts.” The one fact that should make people question the authenticity of the reprint: it states “University Books (logo) New Hyde Park, New York” on the bottom of the rear of the jacket.
  • The Dutton has a price of $6.95. The reprint price is $5.95.
  • The first Dutton measures 8 3/4′ X 5 3/4′ X 1 1/8′. The reprint measures approximately 8 1/2′ X 5 3/4′ X 1 1/4′.
  • Finally, the cloth of the reprint is a pale blue with white threads in it, it is a coarse cloth and has Gurdjieff’s signature embossed in the front in gold. The first Dutton cloth is solid deep blue with the cover plain. 

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