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The Three Knights and the Shirt] - LEBEDEV, Ivan (illustrator) and Ilya ERENBURG - 1916. 
Zerna Moskva 1916 - Folio (29 x 28 cm). 4 ll., initials filled in red throughout, illustrated throughout. Stitched in the original self-wrappers. Exceptionally fine example of the first edition. One of only 25 copies on Japan paper, signed by Lebedev; this copy number 3. This impressive production was a collaboration between the two famous Russian émigré based in Paris at that time artist and illustrator Ivan Lebedev (1884 - 1972) and writer Ilya Erenburg (1891 - 1967), for whom it was one of his earliest published translations. The Three Knights and the Shirt was originally written by Jacques de Baisieux, a French-language poet and troubadour of the late thirteenth century, in the style of popular at that time genre fabliau. Short narratives in verse, between 300 and 400 lines long, fabliaux were written by jongleurs in Northeast France between c. 1150 and 1400. The genre has been quite influential: passages in longer medieval poems such as Le Roman de Renart as well as tales found in collections like Giovanni Boccaccio's Decamerone and Geoffrey Chaucer's Canterbury Tales have their origin in one or several fabliaux. This edition, produced following the style of medieval manuscripts, comprised only 685 copies in total and all the woodblocks were destroyed immediately after printing. Rare: Not in the Russian State Library; WorldCat locates two copies only: at the Harvard and Yale University libraries. [Attributes: First Edition; Signed Copy; Soft Cover]
[Bookseller: Shapero Rare Books]
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