(London: Printed for the Company of Stationers, 1637). 95 x 63 mm. (3 3/4 x 2 1/2"). 26 p.l., 221,  leaves (occasional mis-numbering of leaves, but complete).
VERY CHARMING CONTEMPORARY WHITE SATIN EMBROIDERED IN COLORS AND SILVER THREAD, covers with curving branches of silver bearing flowers and leaves in multiple colors, each with a large bird perched on the limb, and a small bunny nibbling at vegetation at its base, flat spine embroidered with flowers and a pomegranate on a slender silver vine, blue watered silk pastedowns, hinges reinforced with (slightly later) paper, all edges gilt and delicately gauffered with a guilloche roll (binding put on upside down in relation to text block). STC 2672. Silver thread generally darkened and that along the edges partly frayed, minor wear along joints, with one tiny hole in the fabric and a touch of fraying at head and tail, quarter-inch wormtrail to front flyleaf and title page (affecting xylographic border on title), margins trimmed a bit close, occasionally grazing headline or catchword, other trivial imperfections, but still A LOVELY SPECIMEN, the text and binding clean and fresh, and the whole very well preserved, the defects all being minor.
This diminutive devotional is exquisitely bound in a style popular in 17th century England, its fanciful design incorporating brightly striped flowers of varying types, large and boldly colored birds, and tiny, timid bunnies, all executed in feathery stitching. The binding is distinctive in the rather whimsical, free-hand quality of the design. The silver metallic thread used to create the twining stems of the flowers serves a practical purpose as well as an aesthetic one. According to Davenport, the raised silver embellishments so prevalent on embroidered bindings of this period help to protect the delicate silken needlework: "if it had not been for the efficient protection of those little metal walls," the fragile embroidered cloth would not have survived centuries in excellent shape, as the present specimen has. Embroidered bindings from this period are around, though the vast majority of them are found now in rough shape. (ST15100)
Add to Cart Price: $5,500.00
PJP Catalog: NY20BF.021