"THREADED THROUGH WITH GLOWING IMAGES AND TENDER BEAUTY": ALDINE EDITION OF GOLDSMITH'S POETICAL WORKS, IN ELEGANT COSWAY-STYLE BINDING BY SANGORSKI & SUTCLIFFE
GOLDSMITH, Oliver. The Poetical Works. London: William Pickering, 1831. Small octavo, early 20th-century full brown morocco gilt, elaborately gilt-decorated spine, raised bands, gilt-decorated covers, tan and olive morocco doublures, front doublure with inset Cosway-style watercolor portrait of Goldsmith framed with six small pearls and elaborately gilt-decorated doublure with red morocco floral inlays, watered silk free endpapers, all edges gilt. Housed in a custom felt-lined clamshell box. $4500.
Aldine edition Goldsmith's poems, beautifully bound by Sangorski & Sutcliffe in an exquisite full morocco Cosway-style binding, inset on the front doublure with a wonderful watercolor portrait of Goldsmith.
"All Goldsmith's work is like a tapestry… threaded through with glowing images and tender beauty" (Kunitz & Haycraft, 228). This edition includes some of Goldsmith's most famous poems such as "The Deserted Village," "The Traveller," "The Hermit," and many more. Includes John Mitford's Life of Goldsmith. The "Aldine" edition of British poets, first brought out by the publisher William Pickering beginning in 1830, aimed to introduce scholarly editions of the classics in a smaller, more affordable format. This copy is bound by Sangorski & Sutcliffe in an exquisite Cosway-style binding. Cosway bindings (named in 1909 for renowned 19th-century English miniaturist Richard Cosway) were the brainchild of John Harrison Stonehouse, managing director of London booksellers Henry Sotheran & Company, who in 1902 struck on the idea of embedding miniature paintings in the covers of richly-tooled bindings. He engaged the famous Rivière bindery to execute his idea in accordance with his own designs. Rivière brought into its employ Miss C.B. Currie with instructions to faithfully imitate Richard Cosway's detailed watercolor style of miniature painting. These delicate and beautiful miniatures, mostly portraits, often on ivory, were set into the covers (or sometimes doublures, as here) of fine bindings and protected with thin panes of glass. Cosway bindings executed by other than the original collaborators (Stonehouse, Sotheran, Rivière, and Currie) are designated as "Cosway-style" bindings—still splendid productions—by such esteemed binderies as Morrell, Bayntun, Bumpus and, of course, Sangorski & Sutcliffe.
Joints tender, binding sound. A near-fine volume, splendidly bound.