Oxford: Printed at the Shakespeare Head Press…& Published for the Press by Basil Blackwell, 1930. Item #00711
The Shakespeare Head Spenser
[SHAKESPEARE HEAD PRESS]. SPENSER, Edmund. The Works of Edmund Spenser. Oxford: Printed at the Shakespeare Head Press…& Published for the Press by Basil Blackwell, 1930-1932.
One of 375 numbered copies on Batchelor’s Shakespeare Head handmade paper (this copy being No. 134), out of a total edition of 386 copies. Eight large octavo volumes (11 3/16 x 7 1/8 inches; 285 x 194 mm.). , 135, [1, blank], , 140*-144*, 137-306, , [1, blank]; , 252; , 220, , [3, blank]; , 240, , [7, blank]; , 260, , [2, blank]; , 415, ; , 240, , [3, blank]; , 278,  pp. With 111 woodcut illustrations, decorations, and title vignettes after and by Hilda Quick, all hand-colored, except for five that are printed in red and black. A Vewe of the Present State of Ireland with pictorial woodcut title-page border and woodcut frontispiece map of Ireland by Macdonald Gill, both hand-colored. Lettering for half-titles, title-pages, headings, and initials printed in red, black, and blue after designs by Joscelyne Gaskin, some shoulder notes printed in red, with occasional text printed in red and black.
Bound in the original quarter green Hermitage calf over marbled boards by Douglas Cockerell. Vellum tips. Spines lettered and dated in gilt. All edges uncut. A fine set. In the original glassines. Publisher's prospectus loosely laid in.
“The text of the present edition of Spenser’s Works has been prepared by Professor W.L. Renwick. It follows in every case the first edtions…The decorations have been designed and engraved on wood by Hilda Quick, those in The Shepheardes Calender being based on the cuts in the original editions. The initial letters and the letterings for the title-page and headings have been engraved by her from designs by Joscelyne Gaskin” (Volume I, preliminary p. ).
“The text has been newly prepared from the original editions by Professor W.L. Renwick…The headings and initial letters, drawn by Joscelyne Gaskin and engraved on wood by Hilda Quick, will be printed in colour. The decorations, in part based on the woodcuts in the early editions but for the most part original, designed and engraved on wood by Hilda Quick, will be coloured by hand” (Publisher’s Prospectus).
“The eight volumes of Spenser, 1930, are equally good—different, as the character of the author, is, but in merita nothing to choose between them. Perhaps the small devices below Spenser’s sonnets, printed in black and in the vellum copies beautifully laid with gold, are the most discreet and opulent form of decoration, fitting and in flawless taste” (Franklin, p. 150).
Franklin, pp. 150, 236. Ransom, Selective Check Lists, p. 17, no. 67.