London: George G. Harrap & Co. Ltd., (1930). Pogany, Willy. Limited Edition. Leather bound. No. 534 of 1250 copies, quarto size, 175 pp., signed by Willy Pogany, in a Sangorski & Sutcliffe custom box. Fine. Item #22040805
Hungarian illustrator Willy Pogany (1882-1955), a contemporary of monumental illustrators such as Edmund Dulac and N. C. Wyeth, was strongly influenced by botanical designs and the Art Nouveau movement; his work fills this volume with gorgeous decorations, including the half-title, illustrated title page, sectional titles, chapter headpieces and more.
This the signed/limited edition of the Rubaiyat done in 1930 with an etching signed by Pogany below the plate, in pencil, as a second frontispiece. It contains twelve tipped-in colour plates and forty-five small black-and-white drawings mounted, with side decorations, on almost every page of text. Note that the text of the poem is printed on the versos only; the twelve colour plates are tipped onto the rectos, the rest being blank.
The author of the Introduction, George Edward Bateman Saintsbury (1845-1933) was a well-known literary critic and historian, with his work covering a wide range of topics: French literature, English literature, and Poetry, in addition to providing numerous articles for the ninth edition (1875-1889) of the Encyclopaedia Britannica.
Limitation page states 750 copies were printed for England and 500 copies for the United States, of which this is No. 534 of the British issue. Signed by Pogany on the limitation page in ink, as well as on the frontispiece etching in pencil.
___DESCRIPTION: Green leather binding with a small gold and red decoration on the front, triple-ruled in gilt at head and tail of the spine, gilt lettering on the spine, top edge gilt, other edges uncut, vellum endpapers, twelve color plates all mounted onto a tipped-in foundation plate of grey, additional frontis etching signed by Pogany in pencil, title page in tan and dark brown, printing on rectos only; quarto size (10.5" by 8.25"), pagination: [1-4] 5-175. Housed in a custom clamshell box by Sangorski & Sutcliffe, quarter bound in tan leather with two brown leather spine labels lettered in gilt, gilt decorations in the remaining spine compartments, the sides and edges covered with tan cloth, the interior lined with white felt.
___CONDITION: Fine overall; the leather binding smooth and supple, the corners straight, a strong square text block with solid hinges, all of the colour plates present as called for, and internally bright and clean; one prior owner gift inscription on the front free endpaper in a vintage hand and light foxing to the first and final few leaves, else fine.
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