[BURTON, Richard Francis, Sir and Forster Fitzgerald ARBUTHNOT, translators]. ~ Ananga-ranga; (Stage of the bodiless One) or, The Hindu Art of Love. (Ars amoris indica.) Translated from the Sanskrit... ‘Reprint: Cosmopoli, MDCCCLXXXV for the Kama Shastra Society of London and Benares, and for private circulation only,’ 1885.
8vo (190 × 120 mm), pp. xvi, 144. Small diagrams to text. Partially uncut in early twentieth century half morocco. Bookplates of F.P. Richardson and Charles S. Dixwell, together with the latter’s inkstamp. Spine faded, but an excellent copy.
In 1873, Burton prepared an anonymous literal translation of the Kama-Shastra or The Hindoo Art of Love, of which only six copies were printed. It was planned to reissue the work in 1885, but only proofs appeared before plans for publication were abandoned. However, no less than three reprints appeared soon after, all bearing the date 1885.
This copy, printed on thick, watermarked paper, conforms to Penzer’s description of the first reprint edition, being ‘slightly broader than the subsequent reprints’, though he had not personally seen a copy of this edition. Burton's Kama Shastra Society and its quasi-scholarly publication of erotic material served as the model for Leonard Smithers’ later Erotika Biblion Society. Penzer, An Annotated Bibliography of Sir Francis Burton, pp. 171-173.