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Typography

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1 Shaw, Henry Alphabets Numerals and Devices of the Middle Ages
London William Pickering 1845 First Edition Blindstamped Cloth Very Good 
4to. (11 by 7.5 inches, 28 by 19 cm.) 48 plates, 29 colored, 11 of which are hand-colored. 2 pp preface by Shaw, followed by 2 pp list of plates, giving source, date and sometimes other information. The book was published during a period of ferment in printing technology, with the advent of chromolithography, and thus we have plates colored in two different manners. As with everything that written or published by Shaw, the work was a standard both on Medieval culture and on the more specific topic treated therein, and works on typography that followed inevitably borrowed from this work. Over and above the outright use of the decorative letters rendered in the plates, a perusal of the samples should give a sense of the boundless variety of decoration simple letters can inspire even within the seemingly narrow vocabulary of Gothic ornamentation, or put another way, our narrowest understanding of the Gothic. The plates of this copy are clean other than a faint, shallow and inconspicuous impress stamp that is in the corner of a few of the plates. (The stamp is so faint all that one can really make out is the date of 1845 impressed.) Rebacked in blue cloth that is a close match to the blue boards. Some light shelfwear to the cloth. 
Price: 300.00 USD
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2 Shaw, Henry The Hand Book of Mediaeval Alphabets and Devices
London William Pickering 1853 First Edition Blindstamped Cloth Very Good 
4to. [8] pp followed by 36 plates. Plates are duotone, and so less visual "pop" than the hand-colored plates of other Shaw titles, but still a superb reference and probably just about the most widely circulated of the Shaw titles in his day. Spine darkened so lettering obscured, readable but barely. Blue of cloth somewhat uneven. Some foxing and/or soiling affecting a few plates. Upper edge of other plates with film of soil. Otherwise mostly clean, if not exactly bright. 
Price: 150.00 USD
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3 Thompson, Francis Benjamin and John Wilson Ross, editors; illustrated by William Gibbs The Universal Decorator The First Series, Complete in One Volume (Three Volumes in One)
London Houlson & Wright 1859 First Edition Blindstamped cloth Very Good Plus 
4to. 11 by 8.75 inches, 28 by 22.5 cm. viii, 104, [2],104, [2], 84 pp. Many plates, mostly duotone. Typography and ornament are the subject treated by most of the plates. Bookplate of Isaac Adams, as well as his inscription, on FEP. Adams (1802-1883), based in Boston, was an important inventor in the printing field. His most important invention was the Adams Power Press, which, from its invention in 1827, was used widely in bookbinding for the rest of the 19th century. The machine greatly decreased the cost of producing books, and thus was instrumental in the explosion in the sale of books. This publication certainly devoted much space to printing aesthetics, but it should not be overlooked that as its title implies, it covered the wide range of decoration, applied and fine arts, including designs for cabinetry, metalwork, woodcarving. Designs pertinent to printing include typographical, monograms and initials and more general ornamental ones. The spine has had some repairs at the extremities. Otherwise, tight and clean within. 
Price: 500.00 USD
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