With Yuletide cheer we are featuring a selection of nineteenth and twentieth century illuminated manuscripts. It was during the febrile 1800s that an appreciation of Gothic design and the artistry of the Middle Ages came to full fruition, and both professional artists and gifted amateurs strove to capture the beauty of illumination in books and other artwork. Also, the new form of color printing known as chromolithography was especially well-suited to recreating the richness of the ancient art form.
Our fair schedule resumes in the New Year with the San Francisco Antiquarian Print & Paper Fair on February 1st and 2nd at the Fort Mason Center and the California International Antiquarian Book Fair beginning the following Thursday in Pasadena. More details will follow.
Title Smoking and Smokers; Also, Snuff and Snuff-Takers. With Numerous Wood Cuts
Binding Blindstamped decorated cloth
Book Condition Very Good
Edition First Edition
Publisher London Joseph Baker 1851
Seller ID 001373
Essentially two books, closely related in topic and tone, in one. 90 and 90 pp. 8to, 8 by 4.5 inches, 20 by 12 cm. With numerous often droll woodcut illustrations of smokers in their various attitudes and conceits. The work(s) treat seemingly all aspects of their subject, including history, statistical data regarding, and then countless other looser associative matters of which the very act of smoking invites, for smoking, and now the mostly bygone practice of taking snuff, so much more to their acolytes than the simple consumption of the stuff. Thus there are chapters on reveries concerning tobacco, of the pipe as a means of public instruction, on maxims regarding, on tobacco and the classics, and on and on. Without question these droll studies were written largely for the delectation of smokers and snuff-takers! The ranginess and sly wit of the author, together with his sometimes ardent arguments in favor of the products, make this one of those rare cultural and literary artefacts that can entertain the modern reader as the author intended yet also with the ironic detachment of our hindsight. Green blindstamped boards decorated with gilt. Rubbing along gutters. A light dampstain affects the margins of many pages yet more or less blends in with the moderate age toning of the leaves. Some starting of the rear hinge.