“THAT CHIVALROUS FEELING WHICH IS INSTRUMENTAL IN MAINTAINING THE HIGH CHARACTER OF TENNIS”: ILLUSTRATED LIMITED LARGE-PAPER FIRST EDITION OF THE BADMINTON LIBRARY’S VOLUME ON TENNIS
(SPORT) HEATHCOTE, J.M., et al. Tennis. Lawn Tennis. Rackets. Fives. London: Longmans, Green, 1890. Large octavo, original three-quarter navy morocco gilt rebacked, top edge gilt, uncut. $950.
Limited large paper first edition, number 247 of only 250 copies, of this generously illustrated guide to tennis and lawn tennis, rackets and fives.
Henry Somerset, eighth Duke of Beaufort, conceived of the "Badminton Library" (named after his principal country house, not the game) as a comprehensive series of instructional guidebooks, presenting history, rules and strategic hints for pastimes popular among Victorian England's aristocracy. Each chapter boasts expert commentary, accompanied by copious pictures and drawings. Published between 1885 and 1920, "the books provide a rich source of information on the growth and development of sport during the late 19th century in Britain, and are highly sought after by collectors" (Nauright & Parrish, Sports Around the World, 33). This volume includes chapters on "The History of the Court, Racket and Ball," "Records of Matches and Memoirs of Eminent Players," "The First Tournament," "Ladies' Lawn Tennis" and much more. With 12 plates and numerous in-text illustrations. Front board gilt-stamped with Beaufort coat of arms.
Boards lightly soiled. Binding with light expert restoration. Extremely good condition.