WITH 39 FOLIO WOOD-ENGRAVINGS BY GUSTAVE DORÉ: COLERIDGE’S RIME OF THE ANCIENT MARINER
(DORÉ, Gustave) COLERIDGE, Samuel Taylor. The Rime of the Ancient Mariner. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1878. Large, slim folio (15 by 18-1/2 inches), original pictorial blue cloth gilt, beveled boards, all edges gilt. $3600.
Early American edition of Doré’s Coleridge, a handsome folio volume with 39 striking full-page folio wood-engravings, title page and two large engraved vignettes by Doré, in original cloth.
"One can hardly deny that Doré is not merely one of the most popular but also one of the greatest of all illustrators… Perhaps Taine summed up Doré's appeal most eloquently: 'every imagination appeared languid in comparison with his. For energy, force, superabundance, originality, sparkle, and gloomy grandeur, I know only one equal to his— that of Tintoretto" (Ray, 327-29). "In December 1875, Doré did a set of engravings that would make Coleridge's poem famous. Few people today realize how much the popularity of that poem owed to the many Doré editions which finally made it come to life" (Malan, 131). "Doré's illustrations… immediately and marvelously invoke the eerie, magical, superstitious world which Coleridge created… Waterspouts, foundering ships, dark looming figures seem to leap from Coleridge's poetic imagination to Doré's wood blocks" (Anthony Burgess). First published in London in 1876, Doré's Mariner went through 30 editions up to 1902; this is the third American edition. Malan, 261.
Interior fine, a few minor rubs to corners and spine ends, cloth clean, gilt bright. Very nearly fine.