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THE TALE OF THE EMPEROR COUSTANS AND OF OVER SEA
Hammersmith: Kelmscott Press, 1894. ONE OF 525 COPIES on paper (and 20 on vellum) n. Hardcover. 150 x 110 mm. mm (5 3/4 x 4 1/4"). 2 p.l., 130 pp. ONE OF 525 COPIES on paper (and 20 on vellum). Original holland-backed blue-gray paper boards, untrimmed edges. Borders of twining leaves and grape clusters around each of the two full-page woodcuts as well as on first page of text of both stories, woodcut foliated three-line initials, rubrics on every page. Front pastedown with armorial bookplate bearing the Pepperell coat of arms. Peterson A-26; Sparling 26; Forman 153; Walsdorf Collection 25; Walsdorf "William Morris" 26; Tomkinson, p. 114. Two tiny white spots to upper board, just a hint of soil to the covers, otherwise a very fine copy, the binding unworn, and especially clean, fresh, and bright internally. This is a particularly charming little Kelmscott anthology of two Medieval French romances translated by Morris into his special brand of archaic-sounding English. The love stories involve, first, a commoner's marriage to the daughter of the pagan emperor of Byzantium and, second, the adventures that befall French lovers who are taken prisoner by Saracens during a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. Even though the limitation here is a bit larger than with most Kelmscott books, it is still difficult to find a copy as well preserved as the present one.
      [Bookseller: Phillip J. Pirages Fine Books and Mediev]
Last Found On: 2015-10-05           Check availability:      Biblio    

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