(Waltham St. Lawrence: Golden Cockerel Press, 1927). 318 x 203 mm. (12 1/2 x 8"). xi, [i], 309, [1] pp., [2] (blank and colophon) leaves.Edited by Arundell Del Re. No. 22 OF 225 NUMBERED COPIES on paper (and six on vellum).

Original publisher's patterned paper sides by Sangorski & Sutcliffe (stamp-signed on front pastedown), new replica spine of russet morocco with raised bands and gilt titling by Courtland Benson, top edge gilt, others untrimmed (sides with the dots in the paper pattern enhanced by a previous owner in a pleasing, scarcely noticeable manner). In a later suede-backed marbled paper slipcase. Pictorial woodcut borders to fore margins of every text page and FIVE FULL-PAGE WOOD ENGRAVINGS, all BY ERIC GILL. Section title pages with red or blue lettering. Occasional text initials in red or blue. Cave & Manson, pp. 50 ff.; Chanticleer 50; Gill 279; Ransom, p. 297. Light to moderate rubbing along edges, otherwise very fine, the expertly renewed binding entirely pleasing, and the text fresh, bright, and immaculate from first leaf to last.

One of the finest books of the private press movement, this edition of "Troilus" represents an impressive combination of bookmaking materials, typography, illustration, and printing skill. As Cave & Manson says, the prospectus for this work invited a public to anticipate "'one of the most important productions of its kind since the days of the Kelmscott press.'" When the work appeared, "it showed this was a claim to be taken seriously. Gill produced some of his finest engravings for the book. The full-page illustrations showed his work at its best." The whimsical illustrated borders were the most widely discussed feature of the volume; the public was divided about them, as some thought them too naughty, but Gill and Gibbings were convinced of their value, and they were used again with great success in the Golden Cockerel "Canterbury Tales." Though the "Troilus" is generally considered to be the second most important book from the Press, its value is generally as high as any Golden Cockerel item, no doubt because it was issued in a very small press run--225 copies, as compared to 500 for the "Four Gospels," the magnum opus of the Press. The completed volume's modest print run sold out very quickly, and the "purchasers' pleasure was increased by seeing the book rapidly appreciate in value." (Cave & Manson) It has been a very popular book ever since.

Add to Cart Price: $6,000.00

PJP Catalog: NY17BF.022


Browse Similar Items