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2019-10-12 07:09:23
BOUCHER, Lucien.
Images de la Vie des Prisonniers de Guerre. 24 Estampes Coloriées par E. L. Boucher. Texte de Mario Meunier. Préface de Pierre Mac-Orlan.
Paris: Marcel Seheur, 1920. Paris: Marcel Seheur,, 1920. Quarto. Original cream paper-covered boards with title in red and black and mounted pochoir illustration to the front board, grey marbled endpapers. Housed in a custom cloth solander box. 43 leaves of light card each mounted on calque paper stubs, 21 with full-page hand-coloured wood-engraved illustrations, one with a double-page hand-coloured panorama of the camp, the remaining text leaves with decorative borders all with tonal tints or spot colour. A few splash marks to spine of box, pale toning to periphery of covers, light bump to one corner. An excellent copy. First and only edition, number 72 of 175 copies "sur papier de luxe". An extremely delicately produced piece, with each leaf mounted on a thin paper stub, unsurprisingly just five copies on OCLC - BnF, Universitäts- und Landesbibliothek Münster, Dartmouth College, Yale, and NLA - and no copies traced at auction. A superb eyewitness record, in words and pictures, of incarceration at the prisoner of war camp at Merseburg in Saxony, written, illustrated and published by three inmates. In his preface Mac-Orlan justly privileges Boucher's "beautiful, melancholy and malicious" images, for giving an impression of the camp that is "so striking and so honest as to be almost inexplicable [si saisissante et si loyale qu'elle semble inexplicable]", singling out in particular that of "the closed washroom door, with enamelled iron water jugs smudged with black spots, awaiting, like fox terriers in front of a rat, opening hour [la porte des lavabos fermés, les brocs-à-ea … [Click Below for Full Description]
Bookseller: Peter Harrington. ABA/ ILAB. [London, United Kingdom]

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