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John Howell for Books


Cinderella, Or The Little Glass Slipper. Embellished with Neat Engravings

Reprint. 12mo. 4 1/8 x 2 3/4 inches. 30, [2 blank] pp. Half-title, "The Alphabet" frontispiece, including numbers and dingbats, title-page vignette is one of 11 woodcut illustrations throughout the text; a few very small underlinings in the text, two of the woodcuts are hand-illustrated, which adds to the charm, I feel, [ink?] stains on the top margin of a few leaves, paper lightly toned and foxed. Original yellow wrappers with a woodcut on the front cover from the text, and 2 additional woodcuts on the rear panel, stitched; heavily rubbed, some chips to the extremities. A Good copy. Reprint of this chapbook helping children learn how to conduct their lives. Cinderella is a folk tale embodying a myth-element of unjust oppression and triumphant reward. Thousands of variants are known throughout the world. The version that is now most widely known in the English-speaking world was published in French by Charles Perrault (1628-1703) in Histoires, ou contes du temps passe in 1697. This edition has lovely wood engravings which give a feel for fashions in the first two decades of the nineteenth century. From the firm of Henry and Elihu Phinney, who took over their father's printing business when the latter died in 1813. The Phinney firm began in Cooperstown in 1790, and the sons made the firm into a major publishing force printing Bibles and children's books. The Phinneys married into the Cooper family, which included the founder of Cooperstown, William Cooper (1754-1809), and his son, novelist James Fenimore Cooper (1789-1851). This work is excellently illustrated with woodcuts, including 3 on the front and rear covers. The Phinneys published this chapbook in various edition from 1820 to the 1840s. Designed for children, such chapbooks rarely survive in pristine condition.
Joan Hassall: Engravings & Drawings

Joan Hassall: Engravings & Drawings

Joan Hassall (1906-1988) and David Chambers LIMITED EDITION of 110 numbered copies, this is copy 110. 8vo. 10 x 6 1/4 inches. lxii, [2], 160, [7 pages of plates] pp. Half-title, illustrated throughout with over 470 black and white reproductions of Hassall's engravings, introductory memoir by Hassall, comments on Hassall's techniques by George Mackley, select bibliography, index of books, lists of illustrated books and journals and bookplates, eight Hassall engravings printed at the Cuckoo Hill Press, small signed chapbook in pocket at the rear; text clean, unmarked. Quarter black leather over boards with gilt trim, spine titled in gilt, patterned endpapers, mylar dust-jacket; gray-paper-covered publisher's slipcase; binding square and tight. SIGNED by Hassall on colophon and on cover of chapbook. MM219-007. Fine. The definitive account of Hassall's technique and oeuvre, by print and wood engraving scholar David Chambers who designed and printed this book at the Cockoo Hill Press. Joan Hassall was a celebrated wood engraver and book illustrator. In 1972, she was elected the first lady Master of the Art Workers Guild. In 1987, she was awarded the Order of the British Empire. This compendium includes copious illustrations by Hassall. This special edition contains eight engravings printed from the wood at the Cuckoo Press. David Chambers founded the Cuckoo Hill Press in 1959. This Chambers special edition is noted by scholars for its quality and substantial number of Hassall's illustrations.
Rocket Ephemera

Rocket Ephemera

Jonathan Stephenson LIMITED EDITION of 80 sets, each of which contains 55 pieces of ephemera designed and letterpress printed by Jonathan Stephenson at the Rocket Press in Oxfordshire between 1985 & 1994. 4to Clamshell Box. 13 1/4 x 9 inches. 59 ephemeral pieces printed from the early 1980s to the mid 1990s; one piece with a crushed corner, all else in lovely condition. Housed in a clam-shell box covered in brown cloth, colophon pasted-down inside the front cover, printed paper spine, front and rear cover labels; binding square and tight. MM319-039. Fine. Different sets contain different numbers of ephemera; this set has 59, including 2 copies of Leonis Limited letterhead. Among the various pieces included here are several birth and death announcements, business cards, letterhead (one with an envelope), bookplates, announcements, invitations, menus, and much more. From 1981 to 1994, The Rocket Press was one of the few modern private presses in Britain that operated full-time. The main function of the press was to create aesthetically unique and high-quality letterpress books both under its own imprint as well as for other publishers. Ephemeral printing was also done to allow for new design challenges and to generate additional cashflow. Most notably, The Rocket Press was commissioned by McMillan Publishers, London, to print Sir John Tenniel's illustrations for Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass from the original 92 wood blocks which were discovered in the vaults of the National Westminster Bank, Covent Garden, London, in 1985.
The Newe Testamente

The Newe Testamente, M. D. XXVI., The Gospell off S. Matthew, [S. Marke, S. Luke, and S. Jhon]

Herbert Fahey (1894-1959) LIMITED EDITION of 300 copies laid out by Victor Hammer, press work by Jacob Hammer. Five Volumes (2 copies of the Gospel of Luke). 8vo. 7 x 5 inches. [ii], lxxxv, [ii]; [ii], lv, [ii]; [ii], xciii, [ii]; [ii], xciii, [ii] [second copy of the Gospel of Luke]; [ii], lxx, [ii] ff. Half-titles, double-page frontispieces in each volume of the four Evangelists and their animal symbols by Victor Hammer based on Holkham Bible drawings, text printed in black with red highlights; occasional soiling in the margins, otherwise text clean, unmarked. Limp vellum bindings with vellum tongs woven through the covers at the spine on the outside, the vellum is shaped into tabs which are inserted in slips in the vellum to unite the vellum on the turn-ins; binding square and tight. MM319-001. Very Good. This was the third publication of the Anvil Press. This is a handsomely printed edition of the Four Gospels from the press of Victor Hammer, reprinted from the text of the 1526 Tyndale edition of the New Testament. Originally issued in blue-paper covered boards with white printed paper spine labels. A previous owner was inspired to put these volumes in a limp vellum binding by 2 incidents. The first was a workshop in 1986 of the Southern California Hand Bookbinders sponsored by Mel Kavin at Kater-Crafts Bookbinders in Pico Rivera, where Griselda Warr, conservator and binder at the Huntington Library, conducted a workshop on binding books without glue or paste. The technique was developed by the conservators who created the restoration laboratories in Florence after the Alluvione de Firenze del 4 novembre 1966. The technicians who worked on the restoration projects in Florence have inspired others to use this sewn limp vellum technique to restore ancient books in museums and libraries throughout the world. Further inspiration came from attendance at the 1996 Tyndale Conference at the Huntington Library where it was learned that these are reprints of the 1526 Tyndale Gospels. In 1954, there was only one known copy of Tyndale's 1526 octavo edition of the Four Gospels. The Times Literary Supplement, 17, ix, 1954, p. 592 remarked: "The glory of English prose style begins with Tyndale;' he was no mere translator,' for 'the language, the style and measure of Tyndale's New Testament is a finer language, style and measure than the Greek which it translates.' How it happened, nobody can say. But the face of English letters is changed for all time." Victor Hammer's lovely interpretation of this seminal text in the English language.