London: Edward Moxon, 1847. Item #04584
First Edition of Alfred Lord Tennyson's "The Princess"
In an Elaborately Gilt Decorated Binding by The Scroll Club of New York
SCROLL CLUB BINDERY. TENNYSON, Alfred Lord. The Princess; A Medley. London: Edward Moxon, 1847.
First edition. Small octavo (6 5/8 x 4 1/8 inches; 168 x 105 mm.). viii, advertisements, [iv], 164 pp.
Handsomely bound ca. 1920 by The Scroll Club Bindery (stamp signed in gilt on front doublure). Full red crushed levant morocco, covers elaborately decorated in gilt. Spine with five raised bands, elaborately tooled and lettered in gilt in compartments, elaborate gilt turn-ins and green morocco doublures also richly decorated in gilt, floral patterned silk end-leaves, top edge gilt. Housed in the original felt-lined, red morocco edged over red cloth slipcase. With the small rectangular label of New York Bookseller, Philip C. Duschnes (1882-1970) on rear blank.
A very fine example from The Scroll Club Bindery. Advertisements bound in at front, the original front cover and spine bound in at end.
Little is known about the The Scroll Club Bindery of New York and their bindings very rarely appear on the marketplace. There have been two examples at auction over the past fourteen years… and the prices realized were $10,000 (2008) and $6,000 (2004). Around 1920 The Scroll Club Bindery frequently bound books for Charles E. Lauriat of Boston. Lauriat's would give them fine first editions of English Literature and Poetry and instruct them to create a fine and visually attractive binding for these first editions. Their fine workmanship has been compared to the work of Riviére and Son in the twenties. This is only the third example that we have ever handled.
The Princess is a serio-comic blank verse narrative poem, written by Alfred Tennyson, and published in 1847. Tennyson was Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom from 1850 to 1892 and remains one of the most popular English poets.
The poem tells the story of an heroic princess who forswears the world of men and founds a women's university where men are forbidden to enter. The prince to whom she was betrothed in infancy enters the university with two friends, disguised as women students. They are discovered and flee, but eventually they fight a battle for the princess's hand. They lose and are wounded, but the women nurse the men back to health. Eventually the princess returns the prince's love.
Several later works have been based upon the poem, including Gilbert and Sullivan's comic opera Princess Ida.
Thomas J. Wise. A Bibliography of the Writings of Alfred, Lord Tennyson. #24 (pp. 99-100).