London: Smith, Elder,and Co, 1880. Hardcover. First Edition. AN IMPORTANT PRESENTATION COPY, inscribed “Mrs Proctor, with RB’s affectionate regards June 27 ‘80.” Anne Proctor’s husband, the barrister and poet Bryan W. Proctor (who wrote under the pseudonym Barry Cornwall), was the dedicatee of Browning’s poem “Columbe’s Birthday” (1844). The Proctors were among the Brownings’ closest friends. Proctor and John Forster anonymously edited the first selection from Browning’s works in the 1860s. Near fine in original brown cloth with gilt title to spine. Light rubbing to edges and corners. There is browning from a paper clip to the top edge of the first few pages, else the interior is very clean. 147 pages plus 2 pages of advertisements. POE/020309. Near Fine.
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New York: Béatrice Coron, 2014. Paperback. Number 2 of 6 copies. This poignant yet also exuberant book is a collaboration by well known book artist Béatrice Coron with painter, Laura James, and poet, Tiffany Osedra Miller. Coron describes her book work: "For more than 20 years I have been exploring visual storytelling in artist books, paper cutting and public art. Collecting memories from individuals and communities, I stage narrative allegories in silhouette to create a dialogue with the viewer in playful fantasies. These visual chronicles record archetypal stories that transcend time and space. I have been fascinated by the relation of people to their space and the sense of belonging. Using papercutting where everything is cut from a single piece of Tyvek, the profusion of individual stories makes a coherent whole world." [From her website]. In this accordion book, Coron’s evocative papercuts are married to Laura James’s colorful painted pages, with Miller’s poignant poem of hopes for a better future handwritten across the pages in black ink. Miller’s poem addresses the hopes, hardships, and disappointments of immigrant families during their journey to new lands. Coron and James’s illustrations of a barren land, a dying grandmother, a lone rooster, and a severed hand in the desert paint a disturbing backdrop for this quest to a better life. The covers are black with a white and red title label to the front and colophon on rear cover. The backs of the pages are painted gold. Hand-cut and painted on Arches paper with hand-written text. Housed in a yellow cloth covered book case. Size: 66 x 6 inches when open. 5 x 5.5 inches when closed. Unpaginated [10 pages] ARTB/081921. Fine.
[London]: [late 1800s]. A very scarce collection of Lushington's privately printed writings. All were printed by the Chiswick Press. Vernon Lushington (1832-1912) was an English solicitor, a Positivist, an associate of many famous writers and artists, a friend of the Pre-Raphaelites, and the father of the model for Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway. He remains virtually unknown today, but recently available family archives reveal how interesting and important figure he was. It was Lushington who arranged the first meeting between his friend Dante Gabriel Rossetti and Edward Burne-Jones. He contributed to The Oxford and Cambridge Magazine and remained a long-time friend of William Morris, often visiting Kelmscott Manor. There was also a close connection between the Lushington and the Stephen family. After his wife died, Lushington's three daughters were taken under the wing of Julia Stephen, wife of Leslie Stephen, and mother of Virginia Woolf. The eldest daughter, Kitty, became the model for the eponymous heroine of Woolf's novel Mrs. Dalloway. Lushington's views on Positivism, politics, and literature are clearly evident in the occasional poetry he wrote and had printed by the Chiswick Press. This collection comprises: 1) Positivist Hymns, London, 1885. First edition. Original wrappers. 60 pages. 2) Moses. [London n.d.] First edition. Original wrappers. 28 pages. 3) St. Paul. [London, n.d.] First edition. Original wrappers.17 pages. 4) Sonnets on the Positivist Calendar. [London, n.d.]. Original wrappers. 5) Good for Evil: or a Marriage in Kensington Square. [London, n.d.] 7 pages. 6) Remembered Words. [London, n.d.]. Original wrappers. 27 pages. 7) A Slab Tomb in Rome [London, n.d.] 12 pages. 8) Prophetic. [London, n.d.]. 2 pages. Some light wear and browning to the wrappers but still very good copies of such fragile publications. POE/103014. Very Good.
London: C. Kegan Paul and Co., 1879. Hardcover. Scarce first edition. Presentation copy to Lewis Campbell: "Professor Lewis Campbell from his friend the author, January 17th 1879." Campbell (1830 - 1908) was a professor of Greek at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. English author, poet, and philanthropist Emily Pfeiffer (1827 - 1890) was self educated as her family did not have enough money to send her to school. Upon her death, she left most of her acquired property and assets to establish an orphanage for girls and to be used to promote women's education. This volume includes Pfeiffer's original poetry and her translations of work by the German poet, Heinrich Heine. She also reprints her poem 'Madonna Dunya,' which first appeared in 'Contemporary Review' and she defends it against the accusation that it was not an original piece, but rather a translation from a Russian saga. Very good in original green cloth boards with gilt title to spine and front cover. Black decorative border to boards and spine. Cloth along top of both hinges is split about an inch and interior hinges are cracked. Wear and rubbing to edges, corners, and boards. The interior is clean overall with a few small spots of foxing and corrections in pen to pages 45, 47, and 113, which appear to be in the author's hand. 144 pages plus 40 pages of advertisements. POE/011916. Very Good.
Oxford: T. Shrimpton and Son, 1880. Paperback. Newdigate Prize Poem. First Edition. The first publication by the poet, diplomat, and one-time friend of Oscar Wilde; Wilde wrote an unauthorized dedication to himself published in Rodd's 'Rose Leaf and Apple Leaf' (1882). Very good in blue paper wrappers with black title to front panel. Browning to edges of wrappers and a few chips to rear panel. Pencilled initials to front cover. The interior remains clean and bright. Housed in a fine light brown cloth box with gilt and black leather title label to spine. A very nice copy of this fragile and uncommon work. 18 pages. POE/051710. Very Good.
London: Ellis and White, 1881. Hardcover. First Edition. AN EXCEPTIONAL ASSOCIATION COPY. Inscribed by Dante Gabriel Rossetti: "To Frederick Leyland from his friend D.G. Rossetti 1881." Rossetti died the following year. Leyland was Rossetti's most important late patron. Frederick Leyland (1832-1892) was a Liverpool shipping magnate and major art collector. He had a collection of paintings by the Pre-Raphaelites and from artists of the Aesthetic Movement, as well as an important collection of Italian Renaissance paintings. His collection included Rossetti's “The Blessed Damozel,” “Monna Rosa Proserpine”, and “Lady Lillith.” Rossetti also painted portraits of Leyland and his wife. Other well-known works commissioned by Leyland were “The Beguiling of Merlin” by Edward Burne-Jones, and Whistler's Peacock Room, which was installed in his London house (The Peacock Room may now be seen at the Freer Art Gallery). Bound in original green cloth with gilt flower and lattice design by Rossetti on covers and spine. There is spotting to the preliminary leaves and at the end of the book, including on the inscription page, but this does not obscure the inscription. Closed half-inch margin tear to page 327. A very nice copy in very good plus condition. Housed in a modern green cloth clamshell box. 335 pages plus one page ad. PRERAPH/052213. Very Good.
London and Cambridge: Macmillan and Co., 1864. Hardcover. FIRST EDITION. PRESENTATION COPY to Louis Tennyson d’Eyncourt inscribed: “The gift of the author ... to L.T. d’Eyncourt.” The recipient was the author’s cousin and a member of the part of the family which inherited the property, fortune, and aristocratic ambitions of their grandfather. Charles was the older brother of the renowned poet Alfred Tennyson. Very good in original green cloth boards with lightly rubbed gilt title to spine and gilt rules to front board. Minor wear to corners and edges of boards, with a few light spots of damp staining to rear board. Bump to top edge of front board. Bookplate of C.J. Sturman to front paste down. 102 pages plus 2 pages of notes. POE/043009. Very Good.