The Songs and Ballads of Shakespeare. Illuminated by T[homas] W. Gwilt Mapleson, Esq.
Shakespeare, William.

New York: Lockwood and Co., [1949]. First edition. Fourteen leaves illustrated with chromolithographed borders of floral patterns, various designs, initial letters, and text in gilt and colors. Nine leaves of text printed in black and ruled in red with small red initial letters. Chromolithographed half-title and title-page. Printed in color by T. Sinclair, Philadelphia. Binding extremities slightly worn, corners a bit rubbed. Some soiling to boards, a few chips to spine label. A few leaves reinforced at gutter margin with cloth tape. Endpapers a bit soiled and smudged. Minor offsetting. Contemporary ink signature, two early twentieth-century ink inscriptions, and small adhesive on front free endpaper. Small binder’s ticket on front pastedown. A very good copy. Publisher’s dark green morocco over boards lettered tooled in gilt with central armorial design, rebacked with original gilt spine in six compartments laid down. All edges gilt, gold clasps, gilt turn-ins, and white coated endpapers. Quarto. . 23 ff. (Item ID: 16492)


The Songs and Ballads of Shakespeare includes lines from As You Like It, The Merchant of Venice, Midsummer Night's Dream, Love's Labor Lost, The Tempest, Cymbeline, Much Ado About Nothing, Measure for Measure, Twelfth Night, and King Henry VIII. Thomas W. Gwilt Mapleson (1814/15-1852) was one of the best American illuminated book designers. His other remarkable works of color printing include Lays of the Western World (1849?), A Handbook of Heraldry (1851), and Pearls of American Poetry (1853).

Thomas S. Sinclair (1805-1881) was a Scottish-American lithographer. In approximately 1833, he relocated to America and settled down in Philadelphia. He was among the first Philadelphia lithographers to experiment with color lithography. He won a silver medal for it at the Franklin Institutes Exhibition of 1848.

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