Title: Nineteenth Century English Scrapbook Album, ...
Publication Date: 1846
Book Condition: Near Fine
Contemporary full dark green morocco, lavishly stamped in blind and gilt on boards and spine; 4to (210 x 265 mm); approx. pp. 200, nearly full with handwritten poetry and prose, original artwork, albumen photographs, and ephemera -- sometimes adhered to the page, direct on the page, or loosely inserted via corner slots. A little scuffing along spine and edges of boards, else fine. A varied collection of highly skilled original artwork, including 6 paintings en brunelle, 12 in watercolor or gouache, and 7 in black ink wash; plus 11 pencil drawings, 4 sepia albumen photographs (mounted direct to the page, ranging in size from 122x85 to 132x195 mm), about a dozen handwritten contributions of prose and poetry (including one in Spanish), and more than 50 pieces of ephemera. Decades in the making, and with contributions from numerous hands, this is a rich and remarkably accomplished volume -- one wonders if it was perhaps created by a circle of artists. Landscapes and landmarks of England appear in the original artwork (such as a finely detailed drawing of the house where Sir Isaac Newton was born) and photographs (St. Mary's Church; New College from the Gardens), as well as the ephemera (numerous engraved illustrations of castles, neatly clipped from unknown sources). Far-flung locales are also represented: View on the Medina River (pencil drawing), Martaban at Sunrise (beautiful watercolor of Burma), an architectural drawing that suggests India. Prose and poetry contributions, mostly original, offer religious sentiments, thoughts on love and friendship, and a bit of humor (in particular, a piece entitled "Georgy on Shakespeare" argues that the Bard is greatly over-rated). Ephemera includes holiday greetings, numerous illustrations extracted from unknown sources, and the occasional die-cut. Landscapes, birds, flowers -- all the hallmarks of a typical album of the period -- though this one is particularly nice. Bookseller Inventory # SW476-7257
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