The Necronomicon

The Necronomicon -- frontispiece

NB: All English editions seem to be out of print, but second-hand ones can be found. Search at Book Depository UKBook Depository US

The Necronomicon, a "nonfiction" book which revolves around and even attempts to reconstruct H.P. Lovecraft's celebrated grimoire, has a crowded title page:

Introduced by
COLIN WILSON
Researched by
ROBERT TURNER AND DAVID LANGFORD
With contributory material by
DR. STANISLAUS HINTERSTOISSER
L. SPRAGUE DE CAMP
CHRISTOPHER FRAYLING
ANGELA CARTER
Illustrated by
GAVIN STAMP
and
ROBERT TURNER
Edited by
GEORGE HAY

The late George Hay devised the project, and the division of labour is implied by the four-way royalty split in which the Hay estate, Langford, Turner and Wilson still receive equal shares. About the actual contents, I hardly dare speak a word.

In keeping with the murky, rebarbative, cryptic and crepuscular nature of this text, the English-language editions all have very dark covers enlivened with silver foil which doesn't scan well – so the artwork on the left is the frontispiece rather than any jacket design.

  • Publication Date (Third Edition): 1992
  • Publisher: Skoob Books, London
  • Format: Trade paperback
  • ISBN: 1871438160
  • Page Count: 184pp
  • Cover Design: Mark Lovell
  • Availability: apparently out of print

States of the First Edition

One for fanatical collectors: in the true first edition of The Necronomicon, which is presumably worth a few bob more than the second state, there's a bit missing from the caption of Gavin Stamp's drawing of the old quadrangle at Miskatonic University (p152). Later copies have a tipped-in replacement page which restores the missing text (see below).

The Necronomicon: page 152 first state

View of the old quadrangle of the Miskatonic University, Arkham, Massachusetts, built 1797; drawn by G.M. Sinclair, 1915 (from Picturesque Haunts of Old New England, by George M. Sinclair, Boston 1915).