Stratford-Upon-Avon: Printed at the Shakespeare Head Press...and published for the Press by Basil Blackwell, 1928-1929. Chesterman, Hugh; Gaskin, Joscelyn V.; Lamb, Lynton H. Limited Edition. Hardcover. No. 304 of 375, eight volumes (complete), quarto size, 1886 total pp. Near fine. Item #CNSZ03
This eight-volume set comprises much of Geoffrey Chaucer's (ca. 1343-1400) significant work, including "The Canterbury Tales", "Boecii de Consolacione Philosophie", "The Romaunt of the Rose", "Troilus and Criseyde", as well as a myriad of his minor poems. The text used was that "prepared under the editorship of Dr. A.W. Pollard for the Globe edition since revised by him". Alfred William Pollard (1859-1944) was a widely known scholar, who, in addition to Chaucer, edited Malory's "Le Morte d'Arthur" amongst many other works.
The Shakespeare Head Press brings the full force of its talents to the design of these books, with titles, initials and paragraph marks in blue and red, drawn by Joscelyn V. Gaskin, in each volume. Volumes I, II, III and the beginning of Volume IV (all of the Tales of Canterbury) are also graced with hand-coloured, full-colour marginal drawings reproduced by Hugh Chesterman from the fourteenth-century Ellesmere manuscript of Chaucer's "Canterbury Tales"; Volume V, "Boece" contains chapter headpieces drawn by Lynton H. Lamb from woodcuts in a copy printed in Lyons ca. 1508-1525. Loosely inserted into Volume I is a small leaf form the Press crediting Hugh Chesterman with the illustrations of the Canterbury Pilgrims which "have been freely drawn".
___DESCRIPTION: Quarter natural linen spine with blue paper boards, white paper spine label with red and black lettering, fore- and bottom edges uncut, title pages in red and black, initial capitals by Joscelyn V. Gaskin in red and blue throughout all volumes; Caslon Old Face type, Batchelor's Kelmscott handmade paper, quarto size (11.5" by 7.75"), pagination: Volume I: [i-vi] 1-224; Volume II: [i-vi] 1-212 ; Volume III: [i-vi] 1-200 ; Volume IV: [i-vi] 1-216 ; Volume V: [i-vi] 1-177; Volume VI: [i-vi]  2-300 ; Volume VII: [i-viii] 1-250; Volume VIII: [i-vi] 1-252 , one of 375 copies (total edition 386), this number 304.
___CONDITION: The set is near fine overall, the linen shelfbacks without wear, the paper boards mostly clean with occasional stray marks, strong, square text blocks with solid hinges, straight corners with just a few showing minimal rubbing, the interiors are clean and bright, and the set is entirely free of prior owner markings; note that the spine labels were supplied by a professional made to look exactly like the original labels, slight gutter cracking in Volume V, but text block is still strong, and Volume I with a prior bookseller pencil marking on the front paste-down endpaper and a prior owner pencil notation on the rear paste-down endpaper.
___CITATION: Ransom p. 16.
___POSTAGE: Please note that this is a large and heavy set, and therefore additional postage will apply; please inquire for details.
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