London: George Redway, 1884. Item #05589
With the original Pen & Ink Drawing for the Portrait Frontispiece
[CRUIKSHANK, George]. THACKERAY, William Makepeace. An Essay on the Genius of George Cruikshank. Reprinted verbatim from the "Westminster Review" edited with a prefatory note on Thackeray as an artist and art-critic by W. E. Church… with upwards of forty illustrations including all the original woodcuts and a new portrait of Cruikshank etched by F.W. Pailthorpe. London, George Redway, 1884.
*One of six copies large-paper copies printed on Japanese Paper.
Folio (11 1/4 x 7 1/2 inches; 285 x 190 mm.). Portrait frontispiece in triplicate**. [iv], [i]-xvi, -60, [2, advertisements] pp. Ful page plate "March - Showery" facing p. 49.
** The first is the original pen and ink drawing by F.W. Pailthorpe signed in pencil; The second is a 'first proof' also signed by Pailthorpe in pencil; The third is the final version printed on India paper, mounted.
Bound by Jean-Luc Honegger, signed with black stamp 'Honegger' on rear endpaper. Full royal blue morocco, covers double-ruled in gilt, spine with five raised bands decoratively paneled and lettered in gilt in compartments, marbled endpapers, top edge gilt, others uncut. With three bookplates on front pastedown: Armorial bookplate 'Virtute et Labore' (John Burges Carmac?); F.S. Bradburn and Adrian W. Flühmann. A fine copy.
* According to an old pencil note on the armorial bookplate.
A classic essay on George Cruikshank, first published in 1840 in the Westminster Review, during the illustrator's lifetime. William Makepeace Thackeray (1811-1863) was one of George Cruikshank's closest friends. The preface by W.E. Church is in the original edition.
Jean-Luc Honegger is a Swiss bookbinder who for decades has been infusing a "second life" to some of the rarest books of the most prestigious collections. He creates bindings that are works of art, made of different kinds of colored leathers and skins and that sometimes require more than fifty hours of manual work. He has adorned the books of the Bibliothèque Nationale de France and the Bodmer Foundation, among others. His bindings have been exhibited in museums including the Musée d’Art et d’Histoire in Geneva in 2002.
Cohn, 789: for the first edition of 1840; Ray, p. 69: "Thackeray, who remains [Cruikshank's] best critic, particularly praised the 'grotesque beauty' of his earlier work"