BIBLE IN ENGLISH.(London and New York: James S. Virtue, 1850). 375 x 279 mm (14 3/4 x 11"). Two volumes. With "A Practical and Explanatory Commentary" on the Old Testament by the Reverend Robert Jamieson, and the same for the New Testament by the Reverend Edward Henry Bickersteth.
VERY ORNATE CONTEMPORARY DEEP PURPLE MOROCCO, covers with especially elaborate panelling in blind and gilt, thick raised bands, spines handsomely gilt in compartments featuring scrolling cornerpieces and large central lozenge, turn-ins decorated in gilt, all edges gilt, hinges neatly reinforced with cloth. Four plates with spaces for family records, two color maps, and 39 engraved plates (including the two frontispieces and two engraved titles), five of the plates by John Martin. Birth and death information written in at the front, recording, among other things, the birth of Benjamin Brayshaw in 1824 and his death in 1899. Hinge open before final leaf of text, joints a little rubbed, rear pastedown of first volume affected by damp, corner of one free endpaper neatly cut off, engravings foxed (almost always minor and marginal), a few leaves with trivial creasing, otherwise an attractive copy (especially for a large folio Bible), the original decorative binding still pleasing, and the text showing very few signs of use.
It is clear from the title pages and from the layout that the strong point of this version of the Bible is its commentary. There are probably as many words by commentators here as there are by inspired authors, and on the average page, the bottom third as well as two thin ascending columns in the middle are filled with annotations. Fortunately, some of this apparent editorial surfeit has value, especially in the frequently appearing "Practical Reflections," which tell readers how biblical events can be applied to both everyday and important circumstances that life inflicts on them. The illustrations here, especially the five by John Martin, are of special interest. (CRW0612)