Monastery Hill bindings. 1904 Portraits of the Seventeenth & Eighteenth Century


Two handsome books, from the collection of the Monastery Hill Bindery (sold at auction 23, June 2020), Portraits of the Seventeenth, and Eighteenth Centuries. Actually two works, Seventeenth was printed in 1904, in two volumes, and both are bound into one binding here. Eighteenth was printed in 1905, in two volumes, and both are here bound into one.

These are the portraits "Historic and Literary", by C. A. Saint-Beuve, and translated by Katharine P. Wormeley. Well-known personages include Cardinal de Richelieu, Louis XIV, Moliere, Fontaine, Chesterfield, Benjamin Franklin, Louis XV, Diderot, Grimm, among others.

The 17th Century includes 32 illustrations, and the 18th includes 27 illustrations.

This binding is unsigned (no stamp, or tooling).

About the Bindery -

Beginning in 1868, the Monastery Hill bindery, in Chicago, proved itself to be one of America's most successful and high-regarded binderies late into the 20th century. The twelve-volume, Life of Napoleon, bound by the founder Ernst Hertzberg remains one of their best known works, and in 1907 sold for $12,000 (which is around $300,000 in today's dollars); today it resides in the University of Iowa Library.

Physical Attributes -

Each volume measures approx. 23.5 x 15.5 x 4 cm.. 3/4 crushed green morocco leather bindings with decorative paper covering the boards, ruled in gilt. Spine with five raised bands; four compartments with central fleur-de-lis, and two with the title and author framed in ruled-gilt. Top-edges gilt. Red and white endbands. Pages, 17th century - 461, 441. Pages, 18th century - 472, 475

Condition -

See pictures. Handsome books. The green spines have sunned a little. There is some rubbing at the edges. A little toning to paper. I don't see any writing or tears within.

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