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The Yellow Book: An Illustrated Quarterly
London: Elkin Mathews & John Lane, 1894-1897 - Thirteen volumes. First editions. Publisher's pictorial yellow cloth, illustrated and lettered in black. Near fine, with light wear to the extremities, a hint of toning to the spines, faint scattered offsetting to the endpapers, Vol. II lightly starting at p. 84, Vol. III with minor pencil marginalia to contents page, otherwise clean pages and sturdy bindings. A beautiful set, extremely uncommon in such nice condition. The Yellow Book was an important albeit short-lived serial publication that is largely associated with its first art director Aubrey Beardsley. Over the course of its publication, The Yellow Book included literature by noted authors such as Henry James, William Butler Yeats, Henry Harland, Arthur Symons, and Kenneth Grahame, and artwork by talented artists including Beardsley, Walter Sickert, Charles Pears, and A. S. Hartrick, among others. The title "yellow book" refers to the 19th century practice of French publishers to use yellow wrappers on explicit literature, and indicates the mission of the journal- to publish the artists and authors whose works were too controversial for more mainstream publications. Indeed, when his artwork was critiqued as crass after the first two volumes, Beardsley included artwork in strikingly different styles under the pseudonyms Philip Brouqhton and Albert Foschter in Volume III. Riding the popular success garnered by his illustrations for Oscar Wilde's Salome, Beardsley continued his striking and controversial illustrations in the first issue of The Yellow Book in April 1894, drawing immediate attention to the journal. However, after Wilde was arrested for charges of indecency, Beardsley received negative attention for his association with Wilde and was fired by John Lane after the fifth issue of The Yellow Book as a result. Unfortunately, The Yellow Book was tainted by its association with the scandal, and the publication halted after its 13th and final issue in April 1897. Ironically, though he is linked to its initial fame and ultimate demise, Oscar Wilde was never published in The Yellow Book because of his unfriendly relationship with Beardsley; these two leaders of the Aesthetic movement were often compared for their similarly dark and controversial material, which unfortunately only fueled their animosity towards one another. [Attributes: First Edition; Hard Cover]
      [Bookseller: B & B Rare Books, Ltd., ABAA]
Last Found On: 2014-12-10           Check availability:      AbeBooks    


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