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The Fables of Esope - William Caxton - 1931. 
The Gregynog Press, Newton, Montgomeryshire 1931 - 31x23cm, 146pp. Printed in black in Bembo on Barcham Green handmade paper, with 37 wood engravings by Agnes Miller Parker and wood engraved initials by William MacCance. Copy 191 of 225 (250), bound in full Welsh natural sheepskin, title in black to backstrip, stamped 'GREGYNOG PRESS BINDERY' in black to the rear pastedown. Arguably the most celebrated and sought-after of all the Gregynog Press books, standing with the magnum opi of the great pre-war Presses. A major landmark in both the British Private Press movement and the history of wood engraving. ¿Never can living creatures have been more successfully portrayed in so static a medium¿ (Harrop). Ian Rogerson, in Agnes Miller Parker: wood-engraver and book illustrator, 1895 ¿ 1980 (Fleece Press, 1990), describes the Esope as ¿¿ a monumental tour-de-force of the engraver¿s art ¿ [which] probably did more to establish Gregynog in the first rank of Private Presses than any of its previous publications¿. As with several other similarly-bound Gregynog books, the Welsh sheepskin is notoriously vulnerable to deterioration, rubbing and progressive disintegration once the very thin and fragile polished surface starts to break away. However, this much-above average copy is a pleasing book, which has retained a smooth and intact appearance. Condition: internally very crisp and clean with no inscriptions, minor offset from turn-ins to free endpapers as usual, sheepskin overall smooth, intact and clean with some minor rubbing to the edges only, backstrip slightly sun-faded, 2cm split to rear outer hinge with associated minor loss at foot of backstrip, adjacent 6x1cm area of light staining to foot of rear board - overall Very Good. Harrop 20 [Attributes: Hard Cover]
[Bookseller: Woodbridge Rare Books]
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