History of Reynard the Foxe

William CAXTON

Item#: 83721 We're sorry, this item has been sold

History of Reynard the Foxe


CAXTON, William. Historye of Reynart the Foxe. (London: David Paradine (Kingprint), 1976). Tall octavo, publisher’s full black crushed morocco gilt, raised bands, gilt armorial centerpiece, all edges gilt, original slipcase.

Splendid limited facsimile edition, number 2 of only 100 copies of Caxton’s 1481 Reynard reprinted from Samuel Pepys’ copy, handsomely bound by Brazier & Mitchell.

“The story of Reynard the Fox had been current in Western Europe for well over 300 years… Caxton, then, could reasonably expect that there would be a ready sale for an English version of the Dutch work, rich as it was in moral, satiric and parodic elements” (J.A.W. Bennett). His Reynart the Foxe was “perhaps the most popular of Caxton’s translations down the ages” (Deacon, 149). In his preface Caxton disclaims, “If anything be written herein that may grieve or displease man, blame me not, but the fox, for they be his words and not mine.” Bookplate of distinguished bibliophile and member of the Grolier Club, Abel E. Berland. “Mr. Berland kept none of his books behind glass to be venerated. They were all on open shelves in his library, to be lived with, touched and enjoyed. ‘The most important thing I can say to you about these books is that I never take them for granted… I am nothing more than their temporary keeper. It is my privilege to visit with them every day, and to be in their company” (New York Times).

A fine copy, handsomely bound.

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