Illuminated Manuscript: Baird, Edith Elina Helen (1859 - 1924) Illuminated Manuscript: Baird, Edith Elina Helen (1859 - 1924) Illuminated Manuscript: Baird, Edith Elina Helen (1859 - 1924) Illuminated Manuscript: Baird, Edith Elina Helen (1859 - 1924)

Illuminated Manuscript

Baird, Edith Elina Helen (1859 - 1924)

Publication Date: 1881
Condition: Fine
From White Fox Rare Books, ABAA/ILAB (West Windsor, VT, U.S.A.)

AbeBooks Seller Since June 4, 2009

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About this Item

A richly illuminated Victorian manuscript notable for its great variety of ornamentation and done by a woman famous in her day. 4to. 28 by 24 cm. 59 leaves of heavy card, each with illumination. The illluminator, Edith Baird, was the "Queen of Chess" in her day. She wrote several books on chess problems, most notably, "Seven Hundred Chess Problems", Henry Sotheran, 1902, "The Twentieth Century Retractor", also Henry Sotheran, 1907. She was the daughter of a poet, Thomas Winter-Wood, who wrote under the name of "Vanguard" and who also was a chess master, as were two of Edith's brothers. The verse contained in this album do not bear titles. Edith Baird may have written some or all of the poems, but nothing definite can be said about their authorship. In addition to English, some verse is in German and French. While there are references to heaven and God, the poems are more spiritual than religious. Several of the leaves are illustrated with no poetry at all. While Ms. Baird's chess expertise might not seem germane to the book at hand, one can not help but note that the same meticulous thought with which she attacked the thorny challenges of the game she applied to her artwork, with its precise attentiion to detail. She also exhibits real originality in her painting. While drawing inspiration from Gothic, Celtic, the Medieval, Renaissance and Arabic ornamentation, she fused these influences in imaginative ways, and she managed to steer clear of repeating herself, notwithstanding the heft of the album she created. Other than a missing brass piece for the clasp to latch onto on the front board, this album is wonderfully well-preserved. Bookseller Inventory # 003360

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Illuminated Manuscript

Publication Date: 1881

Binding: Full Morocco

Book Condition:Fine

Store Description

Antiquarian books of all kinds, with emphases on color plate books, decorative arts, foreign literature (German, French, Italian, Spanish), children's literature, philosophy, sporting (equine, hunting, shooting).

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