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Rackham, Arthur, Illus.] Wagner Richard

Published by London William Heinemann 1910, 1911, 1911
From Buddenbrooks, Inc. ABAA (Newburyport, MA, U.S.A.)

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2 volumes. First Edition of each volume. With 64 tipped-in color plates and numerous decorations in line by Arthur Rackham. 4to, original honey polished buckram, lettered and pictorially decorated in gilt on the upper covers and spines with illustrated endleaves by Rackham. Vol. II in the elusive dustjacket. 160; 182 pp. A lovely set with only a bit of the characteristic toning of the paper and a little evidence of age. SCARCE COMPLETE SET OF THE IMPORTANT FIRST EDITION WITH RACKHAM’S ILLUSTRATIONS. It is obvious at first glance that Rackham was deeply and personally inspired by Wagner’s great mythic theme. His illustrations emerge from each page with dramatic force and stirring emotion. The Rhinegold illustrations were a grand achievement in the continuing evolution of the artist’s style. Unlike many of his other books, his Wagnerian illustrations were not geared to a child audience. He wrote to a twelve year old fan, "I am very glad you like my illustrations. I am rather afraid that the books of mine that are coming out this year and next, which illustrate Wagner’s great Music-stories, the ‘Ring of the Nibelungs’, are not very well suited for those lucky people who haven’t yet finished the delightful adventure of growing up, but soon, perhaps, you will know and be fond of Wagner’s music and writings, and then you may like these drawings of mine as well as the others."-from Derek Hudson. The artist invites us intimately into the heroic realm of the Norse Myths with his seemingly inexhaustible creative imagination. We sense a timeless serenity and repose in his, "Freia, the fair one," and are swept into the charged drama as "Fasolt suddenly seizes Freia and drags her to one side with Fafner." We enter the mystical realm of heavenly despair in "The Gods grow wan and aged at the loss of Freia" and cringe at the gnarled suffering we witness in "Mime, howling." And how can we ever forget the haunting portrait of the horde of enslaved "Nibelungs laden with gold and silver treasure" as with tortured, anguished faces they hoist their bounty? The range of human and heroic emotion conveyed within these 64 extraordinary illustrations, graphically invokes the genius of Wagner’s literary masterpiece and demonstrates once again Rackham’s preeminence in the realm of illustration. Bookseller Inventory # 27263

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Bibliographic Details


Publisher: London William Heinemann 1910, 1911

Publication Date: 1911

Binding: Hardcover

Dust Jacket Condition: Dust Jacket Included

Edition: 1st Edition

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Buddenbrooks has one of the finest selections of fine and rare books in several fields and we invite you to visit us at our new premises in Newburyport, Massachusetts where have an open "brick and mortar" bookshop. We are also available to meet with clients in Boston by appointment only, where we have maintained a presence for over 40 years. We offer a search service for any books, old or new, which you may have been unable to find. Please call for further information, we look forward to hearing from you.

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