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Idylls of the King - TENNYSON Alfred DORE Gustave - 1868. 
1868 - TENNYSON, Alfred. Idylls of the King. London: Edward Moxon, 1868. Thick folio (12-1/2 by 16-1/2 inches), contemporary full red morocco gilt, elaborately gilt-decorated spine and covers with black morocco inlays, raised bands, marbled endpapers, all edges gilt. $5800.First edition of Tennyson's Arthurian classic with illustrations by Doré, boasting 37 masterful full-page steel engravings by him, magnificently bound in full morocco-gilt."By the early 19th century, the Arthurian legends had become a literary anachronism. Tennyson's poetry brought about a rebirth of interest in the material and eventually placed it on a new plateau of respect and significance for writers and artists" (Lacy, 446). "In 1867 and 1868, Moxon published four folio volumes, one devoted to each of [Tennyson's] original idylls"" Enid, Elaine, Vivien and Guinevere, first published together in a single volume in 1859; the first complete publication of the eventual 12 idylls together would not occur until 1891"""for which Doré created illustrations with powerful, almost overwhelming, landscapes and Gothic architecture" (Alan Lupack, "Popular Images Derived from Tennyson's Arthurian Poems," Arthuriana 21.2, page 95). "No other foreign illustrator and few native ones of the period so completely captured the English fancy [as Doré]". Tennyson and his publisher Moxon greatly favored Doré as an illustrator" (Muir, Victorian Illustrated Books, 227, 244). Each idyll with separate title page. Ray, Art of the French Illustrated Book 250. Lowndes, 2605. Elegantly bound in full morocco, each board with an intricately gilt-tooled border encasing a large block of gilt strapwork surrounding the title, author and artist's names, and incorporating leafy sprays and heart-shaped motifs accented with black morocco inlays. Bookplate. Small library inkstamp, shelf number to first blank and title page.Scattered light foxing, soiling and offsetting. A beautifully bound and illustrated volume. [Attributes: First Edition; Hard Cover]
[Bookseller: Bauman Rare Books]
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