London: Published for the Artist by Frederick Arnold, 1873. Item #05297
1873 Re-Issue of Cruikshank's Phrenological Illustrations with Six Hand Colored Engraved Plates
Presentation Copy from George Cruikshank to his dear friend, John Paget
CRUIKSHANK, George. Phrenological Illustrations Or, An Artist's View of the Craniological System of Doctors Gall and Spurzheim. London: Published for the Artist by Frederick Arnold, 1873.
1873 Re-Issue. (First published in 1826). Oblong folio (10 3/4 x 14 3/4 inches; 274 x 375 mm.). Pictorial engraved title-page,  pp. Six hand colored engraved plates with thirty-one humorous images.
A near fine presentation copy inscribed on the title-page upon publication "From George Cruikshank to his dear friend John Paget Esq. J.P.… Dec. 17th, 1873."
Publisher's drab boards with black linen spine (perished), front cover printed in black. Loose in early tan felt-lined, gray cloth clamshell case, black morocco labels on front cover and spine lettered in gilt.
George Cruikshank (1792-1878) was a British caricaturist and book illustrator, praised as the "modern Hogarth" during his life. His book illustrations for his friend Charles Dickens, and many other authors, reached an international audience. For a brief period in 1826, Cruickshank, already an established artist in political satire and book illustration, turned to phrenology. He produced one initial print (Bumpology), followed by a collection of six plates of 31 engravings, linked by an explanatory preface, under the title, Phrenological Illustrations or an Artist’s View of the Craniological System of Doctors Gall and Spurzheim. It was published during what is regarded as “the phrenological craze” in Britain. The illustrations were also produced at the height of Cruickshank’s staggering creative productivity. In 1873, as phrenology was making its exit from scientific credibility into history, Cruickshank’s phrenological illustrations were reissued by popular demand.
John Paget (1811-1898) was a police magistrate and author. Paget devoted his leisure to literary pursuits. He was a contributor to 'Blackwood's Magazine' between 1860 and 1888. He wrote 'Essays on Art,' dealing with the elements of drawing, Rubens and Ruskin, George Cruikshank and John Leech, were included in a volume and called 'Paradoxes and Puzzles: Historical, Judicial, and Literary,' which appeared in 1874.
"Re-Issue of “Phrenological Illustrations.” "As the subject of Phrenology has been brought before the public by the “British Association,” at their meeting, held at Bradford, on the 20th September, in this year (1873), I have thought it desirable (for reasons which I will explain) to republish my Illustrations of that subject, first published in 1826 – nearly fifty years back – when Drs. Gall and Spurzheim, and the Brothers Combes, were looked upon as great “Nobs” in this matter, when their doctrines were fully believed in, acted upon, and were exceedingly popular; although opposed at the time by some men of high intellect, such as Lord Jeffrey and others, and at a later date – in 1846 – by Dr. Carpenter; and now it appears that Dr. Ferrier, with Dr. Carpenter and other Doctors and Professors, have given Gall and Spurzheim’s Phrenology a most terrible “Knock on the Head;” so much so, that by their hard thumps on the “Bumps,” they have “Turned the Brain” of Phrenology completely round, so that the guiding power, like the helm of a ship, is at the stern, or back, instead of, as it was formerly believed to be, in the fore-part or front; the eyes of course the “Look-out” or “Watch.” Now the observer will see, in looking over my illustrations of Phrenology, that the alterations in the supposed operations of the “Organs of the Brain” do not in any way alter the facts and features of my illustrations. For instance, the “organ of Tune” which I have represented was grinding in 1826. Has been grinding ever since, and will go on grinding as long as that organ lasts; and “Self-love” and “Amativeness” must continue as long as the world shall last; and with respect to “Adhesiveness” – unfortunately many persons will still be found “sticking in the mud;” and indeed I may say that all the other organs represented will still hold their place.
With reference to my reasons for this re-issue, I have to state that, as the work was “out of print,” and as many enquiries and requests were made for it, I thought it advisable to place it before the public again, as an historical record – admitting at the same time that the “organ of Covetiveness” has had some influence in the matter – and this to a certain extent also induces me to re-issue some other of my designs and etchings – all the plates of which I find in excellent condition, such as “Illustrations of Time,” and “Scraps and Sketches,” parts 1, 2, 3, and 4; also “My Sketch Book,” all in parts, plain or coloured; likewise “The Adventures of Mr. Lambskin,” “The Comic Alphabet,” “The Bottle,” &c., &c." (Note on verso of title-page).