Rhinegold & The Valkyrie, The [and] Siegfried & The Twilight of the Gods; With Illustrations by Arthur Rackham. Translated by Margaret Armour.

Bound by Bayntun-Riviere
Signed and Numbered by Arthur Rackham

[BAYNTUN-RIVIERE, binders]. [RACKHAM, Arthur, illustrator]. WAGNER, Richard. The Rhinegold & The Valkyrie. [and:] Siegfried & The Twilight of the Gods. By Richard Wagner with Illustrations by Arthur Rackham. Translated by Margaret Armour. London / New York: William Heinemann / Doubleday-Page, 1910-1911.

Limited editions of 1150 copies signed and numbered by Arthur Rackham, these being copy nos. 903 and 585 respectively. Two quarto volumes (10 5/8 x 8 3/8 in; 269 x 212 mm). ix, [1], 181, [1]; ix, [1], 159, [1] pp. Sixty-four mounted color plates with captioned tissue guards and twenty-three black and white text drawings.

Uniformly bound by Bayntun Riviere (ca. 1960) in full royal blue morocco and finished by Christopher Lewis with gilt ruled borders, and gilt foliate frame enclosing a vari-colored morocco onlaid with painted highlights reproduction of Rackham's "Freia, the Fair One," and "Sun, I hail Thee." Gilt ornamented raised bands. Gilt framed compartments with foliate decoration. Gilt rolled edges, broad turn-ins with gilt fillets and corner-pieces. All edges gilt. Cockerell endpapers. Spines uniformly and attractively lightly sunned to light green. An excellent set, attractively bound in a manner befitting the stunning design, layout, and illustrations of these volumes.

The Rhinegold & The Valkyrie and Siegfried & The Twilight of the Gods are based upon the four operas comprising Richard Wagner's Ring of the Niblung cycle, the most celebrated series of operas in Western music.

"The Wagner illustrations that Rackham had been working on and which appeared in two parts in 1910 and 1911...represented an important achievement for him...His gods and Rhine-maidens were realized on a high plane of imagination...Rackham's determination to maintain and to raise the standard of his work was incessant" (Hudson, p. 92).

The great Christopher Lewis began his career at the internationally renowned Bayntun-Riviere Bindery of Bath, England, during the early 1960s as a finisher. In the 1970s, he established his own bindery and further developed his masterful inlay, onlay, and gilt work, incorporating innovative painted highlights for heightened dramatic visual effect.

Latimore and Haskell, pp. 37-38. Riall, p. 103. Item #02128

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