LIMITED FIRST EDITION OF PENNELL'S MY COOKERY BOOKS, ONE OF ONLY 330 COPIES PRINTED
PENNELL, Elizabeth Robins. My Cookery Books. Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin, 1903. Quarto, original half brown cloth, original paper spine label, original paper slipcase. $850.
Limited first edition of Pennell's indispensable cookbook bibliography, number 48 of only 330 copies printed at the Riverside Press, with 28 mounted plates reproducing title pages, illustrations, and other material from the cookbooks in Pennell's collection, in original marbled boards and publisher's slipcase.
A biographer, memoirist, and food critic as well as one of the great tastemakers of her age, Pennell redefined British thinking about food and "paved the way for food writers such as Elizabeth David, M.F.K. Fisher, and Jane Grigson" (Jacqueline Block Williams). In order to facilitate her food writing, Pennell amassed an enormous collection of cookbooks. This was—unsurprisingly—an somewhat unusual area of collecting at the time and her 1000-volume library made her the most famous cookbook collector in the world (and, indeed, an accomplished collector in any genre). This bibliography, compiled by Pennell, first appeared in a series of articles for The Atlantic before it was eventually streamlined into this volume focusing on 17th and 18th century British authors. Much of the actual collection ultimately found a home in the Library of Congress (Pennell was born in America). Extra spine label tipped in.
A bit of wear to slipcase extremities. Book near-fine, with light wear mainly to spine. Rare.