Small Octavo. Edith Agnes Punnett (1868-1938) was a British citizen born in India whose career as the major Beijing dealer in rare Chinese art led to the Philadelphia Art Museum's acquisition of the magnificent Chinese Reception Chamber. Her work from 1920 to 1938 as an expert on the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) led to her obtaining for the museum's first curator of Asian Art, Horace H.F. Jayne one of the rarest items to survive in tact from the Forbidden City. Her expertise in art as well as knowing how to pressure distant family members and the bribery of officials allowed the piece to be brought to the United States in the summer of 1929. 17 typed leaves of a poem for children titled: "In Old Peking: Sights and Sounds Chinese". n.d. fan-folded. Each of the leaves have her hand illustrated color pictures of old Chinese life from that of the Coolie, the barber at work, and to an ornate wedding procession. In original clamshell case with hand painted scene on cover and on inside cover of case, split to hinge of box but reiforced with mending tissue. Previous owner's later inscription inside case and lightly finger soiled. A Marvelous poem of a China that was largely devoid of Western influence from the custom of foot-binding for girls to the customs of children or old men recounting the past. Such items from a Western perspective yet evincing a warm look at a bygone era have become scarce. Her correspondence from the era is found at the Library of Congress and Duke. Bookseller Inventory #
Title: In Old Peking: Sights and Sounds Chinese
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