Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens; (From “The Little White Bird”) With Drawings by Arthur Rackham.

First Trade Edition of Arthur Rackham’s “Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens”
In a Superb Early Inlaid Binding by Bayntun Riviére 

[BAYNTUN-RIVIÉRE, binders]. [RACKHAM, Arthur, illustrator]. BARRIE, J.M. Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens (From “The Little White Bird”). With Drawings by Arthur Rackham. London: Hodder & Stoughton, 1906.

First trade edition. Quarto (9 5/8 x 7 1/8 inches; 244 x 182 mm.). xii, 125, [1] pp. Color frontispiece and forty-nine color plates (collected at the end of the text) mounted on heavy brown paper, with descriptive tissue guards. Four black and white drawings (two on the title and one each on p. 1 and p. 14).

Bound ca. 1960 by Bayntun (Riviére) Bath in full dark blue crushed levant morocco. Front cover elaborately decorated with a wide border of red and ocher flowers with intertwining gilt stems, surrounding a remarkable inlaid and onlaid design in multi-colored, textured morocco of the eighteenth color plate "After this the birds said that they would help him no more in his mad enterprise". Lower cover with identical wide border of red and ochre flowers with intertwining gilt stems, surrounding a surrounding a superb blind-stamped rectangular panel in a geometric floral design. Spine with five raised bands, with inlaid red and ochre flowers, decoratively tooled and lettered in gilt in compartments. Gilt board-edges and elaborate gilt turn-ins. Cockerel liners and endleaves. Housed in the original blue felt-lined light blue cloth clamshell case. 

An absolutely stunning and early example of Bayntun Riviére at their very best.

J.M. Barrie’s novel The Little White Bird (1902) “contains the first sketches for Peter Pan. The narrator is ‘a gentle, whimsical, lonely old bachelor’, an author by profession, whose ambition is to have a son. He meets a penniless young couple whose own son David becomes a substitute in his affections. He explains to David that ‘all children in our part of London were once birds in the Kensington Gardens; and that the reason there are bars on nursery windows and a tall fender by the fire is because very little people sometimes forget that they no longer have wings, and try to fly away through the window or up the chimney.’ The central chapters of the book tell the story of one such child, Peter Pan, who ‘escaped from being a human when he was seven days old…and flew back to the Kensington Gardens’…The Peter Pan chapters of The Little White Bird were re-issued in 1906 as Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens, with colour plates by Arthur Rackham; this was the book which first made Rackham’s work famous. It should not be confused with Peter and Wendy (1911), Barrie’s novelization of the play Peter Pan” (The Oxford Companion to Children’s Literature).

Latimore and Haskell, p. 27. Riall, p. 74. Item #03645

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