The Merry and Wise ABC. Novel Children’s Spelling Bee. Children's books.
The Merry and Wise ABC. Novel Children’s Spelling Bee.
The Merry and Wise ABC. Novel Children’s Spelling Bee.
The Merry and Wise ABC. Novel Children’s Spelling Bee.

The Merry and Wise ABC. Novel Children’s Spelling Bee.

[ London: Ernest Nister, 1896]. First edition. With over a hundred attractive color-printed vignettes illustrating words beginning with each letter of the alphabet. Some dustsoiling and dampstaining to boards. Very bright inside despite some light toning to margins. A very good copy of a scarce and attractive book of educational games. Original color-printed pictorial paper boards with green cloth spine. Quarto. [4] pp., plus [26] ff., each sectioned into four strips that can be turned separately (four strips for each letter of the alphabet). Item #17158

The present item is both a picture book and a teaching tool that facilitates word games and memory exercises. The first four pages outline activities for children: turning the letter strips separately to form four-letter words, basic reading and counting exercises, and a game in which children unscramble letters to form simple words. The charming and vivid illustrations incorporate the process of recognizing animals, household items, and toys and pairing them with their names.

We could not identify the author of the explanatory text, nor the illustrator (or illustrators) responsible for the art. The verse that opens the work was written by the English composer Graham Clifton Bigham (1859 – 1913), who also contributed verse to Nonsense Rhymes for Holiday Times, The Animals’ Rebellion, Christmas in Animal Land, and other Ernest Nister titles. OCLC records only four copies: BL, Cambridge, Toronto PL, and Princeton.

Price: $850.00

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