BEAUTIFULLY BOUND REMINISCENCES OF A 19TH-CENTURY BRITISH PUBLISHER, EXTRA-ILLUSTRATED WITH 65 FINELY ENGRAVED PORTRAITS
KNIGHT, Charles. Passages of a Working Life During Half a Century: With a Prelude of Early Reminiscences. London: Bradbury & Evans, 1864-65. Three volumes. Octavo, early 20th-century three-quarter blue morocco, raised bands, elaborately gilt-decorated spines, marbled boards and endpapers, top edges gilt, uncut. $800.
First edition of Charles Knight’s account of his career as an author and publisher, extra-illustrated with 65 full-page portraits of persons mentioned, beautifully bound by Tout.
Charles Knight was an important 19th-century author and publisher— perhaps best known for his editions of Shakespeare. “In the course of my long connection with the Press,” he writes in his Preface, “I have been brought into communication with many eminent persons, and have been somewhat extensively mixed up with vast changes in the social condition of the people… In thus producing my memorials of Men and Books, of Social Progress and Changing Manners, I may be considered as risking the indulgence of the garrulous egotism of advanced years. I hope that the form of ‘Passages’ will keep me from many of the usual faults of autobiography.” This handsome set is further enhanced by the addition of 65 engraved portraits from other sources of persons mentioned by Knight. Bookplate of Thomas Edgar Stillman of the New York law firm of Butler, Stillman & Hubbard, whose most notable commercial transaction involved the founding of the Central Trust Company; with a second bookplate of Joel Chadler Wells, collector of early American artifacts and co-founder of the museum at Old Sturbridge Village.
Fine condition, beautifully bound.