"AN EXTENSIVE ACQUAINTANCE WITH THE MOST CONSPICUOUS CELEBRITIES OF HIS DAY… AN OMNIVOROUS APPETITE FOR RACY ANECDOTES"
GRONOW, Captain. The Reminiscences and Recollections of Captain Gronow Being Anecdotes of the Camp, Court, Clubs, and Society 1810-1860. With Portrait and 32 Illustrations from Contemporary Sources by Joseph Grego. New York: Scribner and Welford, 1889. Two volumes. Large octavo, three-quarter red morocco gilt, elaborately gilt-decorated spines, raised bands, top edges gilt, uncut. $1250.
Finely bound and profusely illustrated limited edition, number 371 of only 870 copies, with engraved frontispiece portraits and 23 fine engravings, all in double suite, one full set hand-colored.
"A most desirable gift book" (Rosenbach 21:140). Gronow, a British military officer, "is chiefly remembered in connection with his… volumes of reminiscences… When he relates his personal experiences, as in his account of the state of Paris in 1815, the condition of society in London in his own time, and the doings of the court of Napoleon III, his testimony is to be relied on" (DNB VIII: 716). He comments here on The Duke of Wellington, Chateaubriand, Louis XVIII, Madame de Stael, and many others. The introductory chapter describes Gronow as having a "pronounced taste for fashionable society, an early introduction to the best circles, the advantage of possessing an extensive acquaintanceship with the most conspicuous celebrities of his day, [and]… an omnivorous appetite for racy anecdotes" (p. xv). Bookplate.
Handsomely bound by Stern and Son. A fine production.