"THE UNDISPUTED QUEEN OF NURSERY BOOKS"
GREENAWAY, Kate. Kate Greenaway's Birthday Book for Children. With verses by Mrs. Sale Barker. London: Frederick Warne, circa 1930. Square 32mo, modern full red crushed morocco gilt, all edges and dentelles gilt. $750.
Later edition, beautifully illustrated by Greenaway and handsomely bound by Bayntun.
"In the portrayal of childhood, no Victorian artist could combine charm, beauty and gentleness with such style as Kate Greenaway, the undisputed queen of nursery books" (Dalby, 26). An enormously popular book after its debut in 1880, of "Kate Greenaway's Birthday Book for Children (1880) not only were 123,000 English copies sold, but 135,000 French and 85,000 German copies were placed on the market. For this charming duodecimo volume, with verses by Mrs. Sale Barker, Miss Greenaway made 382 drawings, one for every day, with a full page in colour for each month. It is said that The Birthday Book inspired Robert Louis Stevenson to try his hand at the verses which became A Child's Garden of Verses" (A Critical History of Children's Literature, 254).
Minor rubbing to front board. A handsome copy in fine condition.