(London: John Tuckett, 1868-72). 248 x 190 mm. (9 3/4 x 7 1/2"), 30 parts in two volumes (complete as published). Each part No. 26 OF 100 COPIES, printed for subscribers only, and all SIGNED BY ASHBEE.
Fine contemporary red morocco by Tuckett, binder to the Queen (stamp-signed in ink on verso of front free endpaper), covers with gilt-ruled frames, raised bands ruled in gilt, gilt lettering, gilt-ruled turn-ins, top edge gilt, others untrimmed, original paper wrappers bound in. Many parts illustrated with woodcut vignettes, head- and tailpieces, and/or printer's devices. A Large Paper Copy. With a handwritten note from Constanus(?) Cripps to a Mr. Bruton, "To remind him of many months of work for the Red Cross," dated June 1944 and written on stationary of Ampney Park, Cirencester. Part IV with very expertly repaired marginal tear to upper wrapper and the three leaves of text, occasional very minor foxing, other trivial imperfections, but an excellent and attractive copy, the clean and fresh text within immense margins, and the attractive bindings lustrous and scarcely worn.
This complete set of limited edition facsimiles is a valuable compendium of early English texts, containing many rarities that otherwise exist in only a handful of known copies. Published without preface or commentary and originally issued individually, each facsimile reproduces a short 16th or 17th century tract chosen for its interesting or unusual content as well as its scarcity. Although a few contain practical concerns or polemics, most of the tracts reproduced here were intended to entertain with humorous or satirical subject matter, theatrical and poetic pieces, and prophesies. Putting together a set of original tracts would be next to impossible today, making the present work an especially valuable commodity for anyone interested in early English printed ephemera. We were able to discover little about Edmund William Ashbee, though we know he produced a number of other facsimiles that include much of Shakespeare's corpus. It is unclear which member of the Cripps family wrote the laid-in note that accompanies this work (the name "Constanus" may have been some sort of nickname), but this could well have been Milo Cripps, Lord Parmoor, who was chairman of Quaritch for more than three decades, or Sir Richard Stafford Cripps, who served in the Red Cross during WWI. Although individual facsimiles in this series can occasionally be found on the market, complete copies rarely appear: RBH and ABPC list just two sets since 1933, the last one in 1992. (ST15988)
Add to Cart Price: $3,500.00
PJP Catalog: 77.120