RACKHAM, Arthur, illustrator. KENYON, C[harles] R[ichard]. The Argonauts of the Amazon… With six illustrations by Arthur Rackham. London and Edinburgh: W. & R. Chambers, 1901.
First edition, variant color binding. Octavo. (7 1/4 x 5 1/8 inches; 185 x 130 mm.). 305,  blank,  advertisements, 32pp publishers catalog. Six monochrome plates. Original coral-pink cloth, pictorially decorated on the front cover and spine in yellow, black and white and lettered in gilt. Pale yellow endpapers. Minor rubbing to corners, spine very lightly sunned, school prize label on front paste-down.. A very good copy of a very scarce and early Rackham title.
According to Richard Riall, the first issue was "bound in light blue cloth with pictorial stamping on the cover and spine in yellow, black and white. The cover design is taken from an illustration (plate facing p. 203) in the book. Gold lettering on the cover and spine. 305 numbered pages 125 x 180 and 32 pages of advertisements at the back of the book. 6 full-page illustrations in half-tone by Rackham. Light yellow end-papers matching the yellow of the cover design." Riall then goes on to say "Secondary bindings: In coral-pink cloth, with the same date on the title page and the pictorial stamping. Has grey end-papers. Also in orange cloth with dark blue end-papers, and a slightly larger size, 130 x 185." (Riall, p.42)
Latimore & Haskell also mention a 'secondary binding' "There is another binding of this book in coral-pink cloth, with the same date on the title page and the pictorial stamping; but as the first American edition was bound in blue cloth and bound from the English sheets, we feel that the blue binding was the first issue. The first issue of the blue-binding has light-yellow end-papers that match the yellow of the cover design, while the pink and the later blue bindings have grey end-papers." (Latimore & Haskell, p. 16).
We believe that the copy at hand is an unrecorded variant of the first binding with the same light-yellow end-papers that were used on the blue cloth binding. We know from the advertisements at the back that this book was published in 1901 - there is a listing of "Books by G. Manville Fenn" and the first entry is The Kopje Garrison which was published in that year. As far as the differential in size that is mentioned by Riall - our copy is the larger size - which is normally the way that these books were issued. Later reprints were usually slightly smaller.
"Mr. Charles R. Kenyon, author of the popular story, The Young Ranchmen, here tells a thrilling tale of adventure in which three old chums, in the search for the Inca's treasure in the remote regions of the mighty Andes, procure a little steam-launch for the navigation of the Amazon and some of its feeders, such as the Ucayali. Their whole course teems with remarkable experiences and adventures, and the climax is reached when, after several fights with strange tribes, they are shut up as prisoners in the Incala's treasure-chamber. How they escape, discover gold in plenty, and begin a large colonisation scheme is told in a spirited manner." (Publishers advertisements, p.12).