FIRST EDITION OF DOBSON’S THE STORY OF ROSINA AND OTHER VERSES, ILLUSTRATED BY HUGH THOMSON, HANDSOMELY BOUND
(THOMSON, Hugh) DOBSON, Austin. The Story of Rosina and Other Verses. London: Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner, 1895. Octavo, contemporary three-quarter navy morocco, elaborately gilt-decorated spine, raised bands, top edge gilt, uncut. $650.
First edition of Austin Dobson’s wonderful narrative poem accompanied by other verse, with numerous illustrated plates and in-text illustrations by Hugh Thomson, handsomely bound.
The author of this work, Austin Dobson, led a movement to introduce French poetic forms into English verse. In 1876 he published the first original ballade written in English, and followed with English versions of the rondel, rondeau and villanelle. “Among the genteel book illustrators, Hugh Thomson takes first place… His figure drawing is characterized by a careful blending of genteel and humorous elements well suited to the authors he found most sympathetic” (Harthan, 238). His “smiling awareness of the unheroic aspect of everyday life; his relish for the counterbalancing bravery of period costumes, coaches and horses, and elegant furniture; and his brisk style give his work irresistible charm” (Hodnett, 218). In addition,“his style reflected the nostalgia of the time, his fine line drawings of rural characters and gentle countrified society appealed to the imagination of the public” (Olivia Fitzpatrick). With original cloth bound in. Published the same year as a limited edition of only 250 copies. Booklabel of renowned bibliophile Abel E. Berland, whose famous library included over 500 literary treasures. When interviewed by Nicholas Basbanes for his book, A Gentle Madness, Berland said of his prized collection: “The most important thing I can say to you about these books is that I never take them for granted… It is my privilege to visit with them every day, and to be in their company.”
Joints expertly reinforced, a near fine copy.