London: Chatto & Windus, 1902. Baird, N.H.J. Limited Edition. Leather bound. One of 75 copies on Japanese Vellum with hand-coloured illustrations by N.H.J. Baird, octavo size, 367 pp., in a Zaehnsdorf binding, inscribed by "Edward R" [Edward VII of England]. Very good +. Item #210121053
Edward Albert, King Edward VII of England (1841-1910), eldest son of Queen Victoria, reigned as monarch for only nine years, after having been the heir to the throne for almost sixty years. As his mother held tightly to the power, Edward "was largely excluded from political influence and came to personify the fashionable, leisured elite" (n.b., quote from Wiki). Although his time as King of Great Britain (and Ireland, and Emporer of India) was short, his name personified the Edwardian era, which ushered in many changes, both technological as well as societal.
During his time as a "prince playboy" he would have participated in that most English of country sports, hunting; in fact, he "ordered all the clocks at Sandringham to run half an hour ahead to provide more daylight time for shooting" (ibid). One can only assume it was during that time that he met the sporting clergyman, the Rev. John Russell (1795-1883). Russell not only developed the Jack Russell Terrier but was also a founding member of The Kennel Club and became a respected judge (in addition, one hopes, of discharging his clerical duties).
They must have met, as this volume, a memoir of the Rev. John Russell, is inscribed by Edward thus: "Souvenir / of a grand clergyman / & a fine old English / Sportsman / from / Edward R / Xmas 1903". The volume itself is a special edition, one of seventy-five copies printed on Japanese Vellum and with the illustrations hand-coloured by Nathaniel Hughes John Baird (1865-1936), known for his work with horse and portrait painting.
___DESCRIPTION: Bound in a full decorated morocco binding by Zaehnsdorf with ornately decorated turn-ins, top edge gilt and other edges uncut, marbled endpapers, Edward VII's inscription on the flyleaf in a broad, sweeping hand in black ink, tissue-guarded frontis one of the twelve illustrations which were hand-coloured by the artist; large octavo size (9 1/8" by 7 1/8"), pagination: [i-ix] x-[xiv]  2-345 [8 pp., Index].
___CONDITION: Better than very good, we had a professional restore the binding (name available upon request) which is now strong and sturdy, the corners straight and unrubbed, a square text block with solid hinges, the interior lightly and evening toned, and entirely free of prior owner markings; some scattered spots of light soil to the binding with portions of the gilt lightly rubbed, offsetting to the free endpapers from the turn-ins, and light dustiness to the text block edges.
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