Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott Company, ca. 1908. Kirk, Maria L. Seventh Printing. Hardcover. Octavo size, 305 pp., of the "Stories All Children Love" series. Near Fine / good. Item #18061202
Scottish author and minister George MacDonald (1824-1905) wrote about diverse subjects, from fantasy to fairy tales to Christian apologetics, and his work was massively influential to writers such as G. K. Chesterton, J. R. R. Tolkein, Neil Gaiman, Madeleine L'Engle, and, most notably, C. S. Lewis. "The Princess and Curdie" (first published in 1883) is the sequel to his novel "The Princess and the Goblin", and features the same endearing characters on an adventure to save their kingdom.
This book is part of "The Stories All Children Love" series, which (per the advertisement on the back of the jacket) was comprised of at least fourteen titles, twelve of which (including this title) were illustrated by Maria L. Kirk (1860-1938). Ms. Kirk was educated at the School of Design for Women and the Academy of Fine Arts, and received an award in 1894 for her artwork during an exhibition in Philadelphia.
With a scarce dust jacket, the only copy of this edition with the dust jacket online at the time of this writing. Although the seventh "edition" (printing) by Lippincott, it still shows the quality of workmanship so well exhibited in the late 19th- and early 20th-centuries; the lovely publisher's trade binding with gilt lettering and the illustration in black and white, the gilt top-edge, and the lovely endpapers.
___DESCRIPTION: Full red cloth, illustration in black, white, and red on the front board, gilt lettering on the front board and spine, top edge gilt, endpapers with line drawings in red, frontispiece a full-colour illustration by Maria L. Kirk, title page in red and black with small black-and-white illustration, black-and-white head- and tailpieces and initial capitals throughout, twelve (including frontispiece) full-colour plates by Kirk throughout; octavo size (8.25" by 6.25"), pagination: [1-4] 5-304 . In a cream paper dust jacket with colour illustration, red lettering, and line drawing in blue within a blue ruled border on the front panel, line drawings in blue and tan lettering on the spine, a list of books in "The Stories All Children Love" series on the rear panel, a description of the book on the front flap, and descriptions of two other books on the rear flap; the dust jacket is unclipped, but there is no price on the flaps (it may have been printed on the spine, hence the loss).
___CONDITION: Volume is near fine, with clean boards, the gilt bright and the white deep and unrubbed on the front board, straight corners without rubbing, a strong, square text block with solid hinges, and the interior is clean and bright; head and tail of the spine gently bumped, front hinge is tender, but text block is still strong, a few spots of light soiling to the fore-edge of the text block, light sunning to the tail of the spine, and there is a vintage gift inscription on the front free endpaper, dated "Xmas, 1918". The dust jacket is good, unclipped, clean overall with light soiling, bright colours, overall edgewear, with significant loss to the tail of the spine, bottom of the rear panel, and top edge of the front panel, including some loss of text in the title (the word "The" and part of the word "Princess"), small chips to the corners and top edge of the front panel.
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