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Goldsmith, Oliver.
A Pretty Book of Pictures For Little Masters and Misses, Or, Tommy Trip's History of Beasts and Birds.
Publisher: Edwin Pearson, London;
Date of Publication: 1867
Stock Code: 6064
Fifteenth edition: Facsimile reprint limited to 250 copies only. Square small quarto, pp xvi, 124. 77 mounted woodcut engravings on India paper from original blocks by Thomas Bewick; including frontispiece with border of the Giant carrying Tommy Trip under his arm, 27 animal cuts, 33 birds and 16 miscellaneous. Full contemporary straight-grained red morocco bound by Francis Bedford; triple-ruled gilt border to boards and dentelles with small corner floral motifs; 5 double raised bands to spine with gilt decoration, gilt titles. Teg; marbled endpapers. Large armorial bookplate of Richard Benyon Croft to front pastedown; minor scattered foxing throughout, heavier to prelims and later leaves. A handsome copy.
Facsimile reproducing the Thomas Saint 1778 edition, purporting to be the 12th edition, though both Hugo and Tattersfield state that the 1779 edition was the earliest; Saint commissioned Bewick to redraw the cuts from John Newbery’s 1752 book of the same name. Tattersfield mentions this 1867 edition under “Specious Pretences” as, though this is a genuine Bewick work, Pearson tenuously attributed it to Goldsmith and appears to have added 20 more cuts to make it more saleable; he produced a number of other works which were supposedly Bewick rarities but were in fact concocted by himself. Pearson’s involvement with the works of Bewick is perennially entertaining but suffice it to say here that he was something of the mountebank. Having purchased a large number of Bewick blocks in the mid 1860s, Pearson was keen to establish himself as an authority on Bewick and named his shop the “Bewick Repository”. According to Pearson, Bewick’s daughters told him that these cuts were some of Bewick’s earliest works; the publication was aimed at bibliophile collectors of Bewick’s work and, being limited to 250 copies only, is now rare.
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