PERVIGILIUM VENERIS.

(Hammersmith: Doves Press, 1910 [i.e., 1911]). 235 x 170 mm. (9 1/4 x 6 5/8"). 1 p.l., 7, [1] (blank) pp.From the text as edited, rearranged, and supplemented by J. W. Mackail. ONE OF 150 COPIES on paper (and 12 on vellum).

Original limp vellum by the Doves Bindery (stamp-signed on rear pastedown), flat spine lettered in gilt. Printed in red and black. Front pastedown with bookplates of Mary Priscilla Smith and Brooklyn Public Library. Tidcombe DP-21; Tomkinson, p. 56. Vellum a little rumpled, with (naturally occurring) discoloration and mild soiling, but still a fine copy, clean, fresh, and bright internally, in a binding with few signs of wear.

Attractively printed (as always) by the Doves Press, this short Latin poem of unknown origin is a hymn to love and springtime, celebrating the rites of the goddess of procreation Venus Genetrix, as observed over a three-day holiday in a Sicilian village. According to the Oxford Companion to Classical Literature, "it dates perhaps from the time of Hadrian and is possibly the work of Florus." It has a lovely refrain that is repeated every fourth line and that stands out here in red: "cras amet qui numquam amavit quique amavit cras amet" ("tomorrow may he love who has never loved, [and] whoever has loved, may he love tomorrow"). T. J. Cobden-Sanderson and Emery Walker founded the Doves Press in 1900, as a vehicle for the production of what they termed "the Book Beautiful." As Cave says, the Doves Press books, "completely without ornament or illustration, . . . depended for their beauty almost entirely on the clarity of the type, the excellence of the layout, and the perfection of the presswork."
(ST17040d)

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PJP Catalog: 79.132

PERVIGILIUM VENERIS. DOVES PRESS.
PERVIGILIUM VENERIS.
PERVIGILIUM VENERIS.
PERVIGILIUM VENERIS.

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