ILLUSTRATED LIMITED LARGE-PAPER FIRST EDITION OF THE BADMINTON LIBRARY’S VOLUME ON RACING AND STEEPLE-CHASING
COVENTRY, Arthur and WATSON, Alfred E.T. Racing and Steeple-Chasing. London: Longmans, Green, 1886. Large octavo, original three-quarter navy morocco gilt rebacked with original spine laid down, top edges gilt, uncut. $950.
Limited large paper first edition, number 194 of only 250 copies, of this illustrated guide to breeding, training and riding racehorses.
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 "History of Horse-Racing," "Racing Officials," "Treatment of Yearlings," "Fences and Fencing" and "Famous Chasers and their Riders," among others. With chromolithographic frontispiece and numerous in-text wood-engravings. Front boards gilt-stamped with Beaufort coat of arms. Podeschi 230.
Scattered light foxing. Handsome binding with light expert restoration.