If you're a fan of private press books, this edition of the classic Crusoe is sure to appeal to you. Published by the Haslewood Press, on all-rag paper, each illustration by E. McKnight Kauffer is hand-colored in the pochoir style; this copy with a dedication from E. McKnight Kauffer on the limitation page (#216 of 535 copies).
About the Work -
Presented as an autobiography of Robinson Crusoe, a castaway who spends 28 years on a remote tropical desert island near Trinidad, encountering cannibals, captives, and mutineers, before ultimately being rescued. The story has been thought to be based on the life of Alexander Selkirk, a Scottish castaway who lived for four years on a Pacific island called "Más a Tierra", now part of Chile, which was renamed Robinson Crusoe Island in 1966. Despite its simple narrative style, Robinson Crusoe was well received in the literary world and is often credited as marking the beginning of realistic fiction as a literary genre. It is generally seen as a contender for the first English novel. Before the end of 1719, the book had already run through four editions, and it has gone on to become one of the most widely published books in history.
About the Publisher -
A partnership between an artist, Frederick Etchells, and a scholar, Hugh Macdonald. Crusoe is considered on of their finest printings.
About the Illustrator -
Edward McKnight Kauffer (14 December 1890 – 22 October 1954) was an American artist and graphic designer who lived for much of his life in the United Kingdom. He worked mainly in poster art, but was also active as a painter, book illustrator and theatre designer.
Physical Attributes -
Measures approx. 26 x 20 x 3.5 cm. Hardcover, buckram spine with decorative paper covering the boards. Title on spine blind stamped (no gilt). Rag paper. Dedication copy. Top-edge cut, others uncut (but opened). Pochoir illustrations (frontis and six plates). Limited edition of 535. 332 numbered pages.
See pictures. Protected in slipcase and mylar, still a few rub marks on the spine (small). Ex libris plate removed from paste-down (inside front board) leaving circle mark. Pencil bookseller number at the top of the flyleaf (1st blank page) and a mark of color (from pochoir process). A little separation at the gutter at first quire (folding of printed pages) but very small. A little toning to all pages. Kauffer dedication on the front colophon. Title page tissue a little rough at edges. Uncut, and opened, so some rough edges; opening of rear "editorial note" left .75 inch margin bite, no text affected. Not all illustration tissue guards are present. Pencil bookseller notes at the bottom of the rear flyleaf. I'm nitpicking for your expectations, but it's a nice book that's been well kept in it's slipcase.
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