Sei sulla pagina 1di 370

This book

is

DUE

on the

last date

stamped below

JAN 1

"^

1958

RN BRANCH,
UNWti
F

CALIFORNIA,

LIBRARY,

BOOKBINDINGS OLD AND NEW

4l4

^^<m.

LIBRO LLAMADO RELOX DE PRINCIPES.


SIXTEENTH CENTURY BINDING WITH THE

ARMS OF FRANCIS

I.

Bookbindings Old and


Notes of a Book-Lover

New

IVitb an Account of the Grolier Club

of

New

York

By Brander Matthews

38^4Illusti^ated

New York

Macmillan and Co.

London

Mdcccxcv
All rights reserved

Copyright, 1895,

By

MACMILLAN AND

CO.

J. S.

Cushing & Co.

- Berwick & Smith. Norwood, Mass., U.S.A.

AA 4-S b
I

v5

f^

THESE STRAY NOTES OF A WANDERING

BOOK-LOVER

ARE INSCRIBED TO

THAT COMPACT BODY OF AMERICAN

BIBLIOPHILES

THE GROLIER CLUB

CONTENTS.
BOOKBINDINGS OF THE PAST.
CHAP.
I.

PAGE

Grolier and the Renascence

II.

De Thou and

"

Le Gascon"

47 68

III.

Padeloup and Derome

^
i

BOOKBINDINGS OF THE PRESENT.


I.

The Technic of the Craft


The Binders of To-day The Outlook for the Future

oi:

II.

119
151''

III.

COMMERCIAL BOOKBINDING.
I.

The Antiquity of Edition Binding

171

II.

The Merits of Machine Binding


The Search for Novelty
Stamped Leather
o
.

182

III.

209

IV.

216

BOOKS
I.

IN

PAPER-COVERS.
Fiction
. . .

The Summer Clothes of

233

II.

The Influence of the Pictorial Poster


British and American Paper-covers
vii

246 264

III.

viii

Contents.

THE
CHAP.
I.

CxROLIER CLUB OF
its

MEW

YORK.
PAGE
291

New York and

Clubs

II.

Grolier himself

296

III.

The Aims of the Club

...........
....

302

IV.

The Publications of the Grolier Club

314

INDEX

337

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.

FULL-PAGE PLATES.
PAGE

LiBRO Llamado Relox de Principes.


I

Binding of the
.

6th Century with Arms of Francis L


Binding, "

Frontispiece
7
11
.

Grolier

Heliodori

"

Grolier Binding, "Bessarioni" Grolier Binding, "II Cortegiano"


"Benedetti's Anatomy," 1537
<-

15

19

Colloquies of Erasmus," Basel, 1537


Discorso

23

"Erizzo,

Sopra

le

Modaglie

Antiche,"
27
31

Venice, 1559

Binding executed for Tho. Maioli, 1536


Italian, i6th

Century
. .

35

Binding executed by Clovis Eve for Louis XI IL


<'

39

Pandectarum Juris Florentini."

Binding with the


II.

Arms of France and the Cipher of Henry


Diana of Poitiers
"Valerii Maximi Dictorum."
Binding of the i6th Century Binding executed by Nicolas Eve, 1578

and
41

Bound by Nicolas Eve

45

49
51
.

French, i6th Century.

Attributed to Clovis Eve


1644.

55

"Arianus, de Venatione," Paris,

Bound by Eve
"

59

French, 17TH Century.

Attributed to

Le Gascon"

63

List of I11list rat ions.


PAGE

"Office de la Semaine Sainte."

Bound by Padeloup
Binding

73

"Ariosto, Orlando Furioso," Venice, 1584.

OF Derome the Younger

']]

French, i8th Century.


English, i8th Century.

By Derome

81

Roger Payne

91

"History, Theory, and Practice of Illuminating."

By Digby Wyatt.

Bound by Zaehnsdorf
bound by ruban

...

99
i09
113
123

"aucassin and nicolete.''


Inside Cover of Preceding

....

Binding by Francisque Cuzin

"In Memoriam.''

Bound by Cobden-Sanderson

133

A Binding by Cobden-Sanderson New Testament. Bound by William Matthews Irving"s " Knickerbocker's History of New York."
. .

139
141

Bound by William Matthews


Inside Cover of Preceding

145

149
185

"Pride and Prejudice."'


"Selections from
E. A.

Designed by Hugh Thomson


Designed by

Robert Herrick."
,

Abbey

195

"Goblin Market."'

Designed

"by L.

Housman

197

"Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam." Designed by E. Vedder

201 205

"Half Hours with an Old Golfer"'

"A Book

of the Tile Club."'

Designed by Stanford
213

White

"Century Dictionary."
Hovv'ARD Pyle

Designed by Stanford White

217

"Merry Adventures of Robin Hood." "fHE Quiet

Designed by
221

Life."

Designed by Stanford White

225

List of 1 1hist rat ions.


''The Oregon Trail."

xi
PAGE

Designed by

J.

A. Schweinfurth
'

229

Facsimile of the Cover to

Dickens'

Mystery of
235

Edwin Drood"
"Little Dinner."

Designed by M. N. Armstrong

243

"contes pour les bibliophiles."


AURIOL

designed by m.
253

"UEnfant Prodigue."
"

Designed by Willette

257
261

Le Reve."

Designed by Carloz Schwabe Designed by Walter Crane

....
.
.

"Baby's Opera."

273
275

"Foes
"

in

Ambush."

Designed by R.

L.

M.

Camden

John Gilpin."

Designed by Randolph Caldecott


Oueene."

279

Spenser's "Faerie

Designed by Walter
281

Crane

"Under the Window." Designed by Kate Greenaway


Grolier Club Book Plate

285

299
303

Grolier Club Building

Reduced Facsimile of Title-page of Grolier Club


Edition of "

A Decree

of Starre-Chamber, con315

cerning Printing"

ILLUSTRATIONS IN THE TEXT.


Aldine Tools
29

A "Powder"
Tools used

with the Device of the Dauphin

37 43

Curved Gouges
in

the

"

Fanfares "

54 54

Little Branches

Tools of

"

Le Gascon

"

65

Three

17TI1

Century Borders

69

xii

List of Illiistnitions.
PAGE
85
86, 87

A Uerome Border
Eighteenth Century Tools

Binding by Cobden-S Anderson


Sigurd."

105

"The Story OF
"Atalanta
"HoJiERi
in

Bound by Cobden-Sanderson Bound by Cobden-Sanderson


.
. .

127
128

Calydon."

Ilias."'

Bound by Cobden-Sanderson

130

Shelley's "Revolt of Islam."

Bound by Cobden-San131

derson
"Life and Death of Jason."

Bound by Cobden-San.

derson
" Les Chatiments."

136
155 173

Bound by Petit
"

"Art Out-of-Doors

"An

Island

Garden"

174
188

"Many

Inventions"

"Evening Tales"

189 190
193

"Greek Vase Pa:ntings"

"The Chatelaine of La Trinite" "The Ballad of Beau Brocade"


Panel from Back and Cover of "Old Italian Masters"

194

207
211

"A

Girl's Life 80

Years Ago"

"Thumb-nail Sketches"

220

"Proofs from Scribner's Monthly."

Designed by

F.

Lathrop
"Selected Proofs."
" Bric-a-Brac."
"

239

Designed by Stanford White

240

Designed by Caran d'Ache

....
. .
.

260
263

Le Petit Chien."

Designed by Louis Morin

"The Century Illustrated


signed BY Elihu

]\Ionthly Magazine."

De264

Vedder

List of Illustrations.
"The Century."
"

xiii
PAGE

Designed by Stanford White

265

English Illustrated Magazine."'

Designed by Wal266

ter Crane
'Harper's 'Harper's

Monthly

"

(English)

267
268

Monthly " (American)


Designed by Will H. Low

"Bookbuyer."

269
270

Harvard Graduates' Magazine


u

pexite Poucette."

Designed by Boutet de Monvel

284
295

The Grolier Arms


Grolier Club Card Invitation
Head-piece from Grolier Club Edition of "Knickerbocker's 'History of

306

New

York.'"

Drawn by
318

W.
Noah's

H.

Drake
from Grolier Club

Another drawn by Howard Pyle


Log-book Head-piece

319

Edition of "Knickerbocker's "History of

New
320
.

York.'"

Drawn by W. H. Drake

Reduced Facsimile of Title-page of "Philobiblon"

326
327

Reduced Facsimile of Last Page of "Philobiblon"

BOOKBINDINGS OF THE PAST

BOOKBINDINGS OF THE PAST

begin

to

set

clown

here

these

rambling impressions and stray suggestions

about

the
I

great

bookbindof a

ers of the past,

am reminded
Burton's
"

pleasant

saying recorded

in

Book-

Hunter," that storehouse of merry jests against


those

who

love books not wisely but too well.

Burton

tells

us that in the hearing of a certain

dealer in old tomes and rare volumes a remark

was ventured that such an one was

"

said

to

know something about


forth the fatal answer:

books," which

brought

"He know
all,
I

about books?

Nothing

nothing

at

assure you; unless,

perhaps, about their insides."

The
now,
I

pertinence of this retort to myself, just

cannot but confess

at

once.

know
yet,

best about
it is

books

is

their

What I And insides.

perhaps,

not an unpardonable sin for an


3

Bookbindings Old and New.

author to concern himself also with the outside


of
tall

books

if if

so be he love them,

if

he care for

copies,

he be capable of cherishing the

good
is

edition, the
I

one with the misprint.


to
risk

This
a

why

am emboldened
in

myself in

voyage of retrospection
ters

search of the mas-

and the masterpieces

of the bibliopegic art.

I.

GROLIER AND THE RENASCENCE.


In a letter written to a friend in April, 15 18,

Erasmus highly praised the


added, "

civility,

the modesty,

the integrity, and the munificence of his corre-

spondent, and

You owe nothing

to

books, but in the future books will give you an


eternal glory."

The man
Viscount
the
of
of

to

whom

this

was written was a

Aguisy, for a while treasurer of


Italy,

army

then French ambassador to


treasurer of France under

Rome, and afterward


Francis
I.,

Henry

II,,

Francis

II.,

and Charles IX.

"Born
six

in

1479, dying in

1565, he lived eighty-

years,"

so

M. Le

Roux de

Lincy,

his

biographer,

tells us,

"

during which he showed

himself always a zealous protector of the learned,


a lover of the Q:ood and beautiful books issued

by the Giunti and the Aldi, or by the other publishers of the time,

and also an ardent collector


5

of

Bookbindings Old and New.


of

coins and
of of

antiquities."
far

Yet the prediction


true that the
of

Erasmus has so
the

come
and
it

name

ambassador

treasurer

France

would be forgotten were


the

not that the fame of

book-lover has

lingered,

and spread,

until

now, more than three centuries after the death


of

Jean Grolier

of

Lyons,

there

is

a flourish-

ing club called by his

name here

in

New

York,

the chief city of a continent undiscovered

when

he was born.
Grolier had the good fortune to live through
the glorious years of the Renascence, the arts were reviving at once

when

all

and flourishing

together;
aid
in

and he had the good


development
lie

judgment
art

to

the

of

the

of

bookinsep-

binding to which
arably.

attached his

name

The

art

was not new when he began

to collect

the best works of the best printers,


to

but
it

it

was about

have a new birth

and when

was born again, he helped


Perhaps the
first

to guide its steps.

bookbinder was the humcollected

ble
tiles

workman

who

the

baked

clay

on which the Assyrians wrote their laws

and he was a bookbinder also who prepared a

gJg.^-^t,vr.t^!a,l.,yKU.'-.,.-,..rl!.a>-..5.t.,.^^.i.,^

I^.^,

7rf.AlS -.M.

i tl
i

-^toLrMrf^t.

Ill

'l.f .ntlMlnl'iSa

tli rfi .ii

ija
fflli

Bookbindings Old and New.

protecting cylinder to guard the scrolls of papyrus

on which Vergil, and Horace, and Martial

had written their verses.


Before the invention of printing, the choicer

manuscripts, books of hours, and missals, were

made even more


ivory,

valuable

by sides

of

carved
often

or

of

delicately

wrought
after

silver

studded with gems.


invented,
stitch

Even

printing

was

the

binder was called upon only to


all

the leaves of the book,

further deco-

ration

being the
Cellini

privilege

of

the silversmith.

Benvenuto
for the

was paid

six

thousand crowns

golden cover, carved and enriched with

precious stones, which he

made

for a

book that

Cardinal

de'

Medici wished to give Charles V.

In France the silversmiths claimed the


oly of binding,
stuffs

monop-

and

also of dealing in the finer


in cloth-of-gold, but

not

merely

even in

velvet.

Certain of the books bound in the monasteries

were incased in boards


actual

veritable
that

boards, of

wood

so

thick

now and

again

they were hollowed out to hold a crucifix or a


pair
of

spectacles,

although sometimes

it

was

10
only to

Bookbindings Old and New.


make room
that
fell

for

an almanac.
thus

It

is

no

wonder
begirt

when

tome
it

ponderously

upon Petrarch

so bruised his leg

that for a while


tion.

there was danger of amputareal

Even when these


thick
all

boards were thin,


conceal
a

they were
that

enough
the

to

worm,
;

worst of

enemies of books
the

and

thus real
in

boards, like
Italian

German

condottierl

many an

city,

destroyed what
In a

they

were meant to protect.


board

time the genuine


pasteboard,

was given up

for

which
of

was then made by pasting together sheets


paper
in
;

and myriads

of

pages of books no longer


stiffen

fashion were
of

thus destroyed to
In

the

covers

newer volumes.

our day

many
and

interesting fragments of forgotten authors,

not a few curious

and instructive engravings,


from
oblivion,

have

been

rescued

when

the

decay of old book-covers has led to the picking


apart of the pasteboards beneath the crumbling
leather.

With
an

the

invention

of

printing,

and

the

immediate multiplication
urgent

of books,

there

came
of

demand

for

workmen capable

Bookbindings Old and New.


covering a volume in seemly fashion.
In

13

many
in-

a monastery the binderies must have been

creased

hastily

to

meet the demand


of

and we
monastic
on

can

trace

the

handiwork
designs

these

craftsmen

by the

they

imprinted

the covers of

the books they


of

bound designs
the

made up mainly
script missals,
of
'

motives from

manu-

from the typographic ornaments


printers,

the

early

and from the transcripts

of those carvings in

wood and stone with which


time

the

churches

of

that

were

abundantly

enriched.

But
not

the

workshops

in

the

monasteries did
of
all

suffice,

and leather-workers and

sorts

saddlers,

harness-makers,

those

who put

together the elaborate boots and shoes of the


times

were
and
the

impressed into the service, taking


trade of bookbinding, not only

over to the

new

their skill in dealing with leather, but also the


tools

designs

with
the

which
boots,

they

had

been wont

to decorate

the

saddles,

the harness, and the caskets of fair ladies and


lords of high degree.

For the most part these


even in the rudi-

were humble

artisans, lacking

14

Bookbindings Old mid New.


of

ments

learning.

The

authorities in
to

France

preferred

the

workman
books
in

be

ignorant

who

was called

in to

bind the records of the State


of

and

the

royal

account.

The
"

late

Edouard Fournier,
de
of
la

his

essay

on the
the

Art

Reliure

en France," cites

contract
as

one

Guillaume

Ogier

in

Italy,

1492,

binder of the registers of the treasury, in which


the
artisan
"

declared and

made oath

that

he

knew
the
of

not

how
one

to read nor to write."

Perhaps
early

reason

for

the

superiorit}^

of

Italian

bindings

over
that

the

French

the

same period was


in

the

workmen

employed

Italy

were more intelligent and


a

better educated.
in

In

book printed by Aldus


is

15 13, the notice to the binder

in

Greek!

Ambroise Firmin-Didot explained the anomaly


of this

apparently extraordinary culture on the

part of the handicraftsmen of that era by sug-

gesting that the

workmen employed by Aldus

who
many
the
of

was binder as well as printer

were
to
"

them Greeks who had been driven


after

Venice

the

taking of

Constantinople by
of
"

Turks.

Every reader

Romola

will

Bookbindings Old and New.


remember the influence exercised on
renascence

the Italian
of

by the
in

personal
art

presence

the

Greeks

and

no

was

this influence

more

immediate, more permanent, or more beneficial,

than in the art of bookbinding.

We

know

that Grolier
still

was

in

Italy in
in

15 12,

and that he was

at

Milan
of

1525.
"

was a friend and a patron


book
left

Aldus.

He No

the Aldine
"

press,"

M. Le Roux de

Lincy declares,

without several copies, some

on vellum," some on white or coloured paper,


being specially printed for the library of the

French
acts

collector.

Voltaire says that


citizen

"

a reader

toward

books as a
live

toward

men

he does not

with

all

his

contemporaries,

he chooses a few friends."


his friends the best
ful
;

Grolier chose for

books and the most beautiless


tells

he was fond of a good author no

than
us,

of

a wide margin.
is

As
and

Dr.

Holmes

library "

a looking-glass in which the owner's


;

mind
of

is

reflected "

it

is

a noble portrait
at

the

man which we
of

get

when we look

the

books

Jean

Grolier.

He was

lover

of the

New
c

Learning.

His praises are repeated

8
1

Bookbindings Old and New.

in
tlie

many

dedication

from the scholars and


of

publisher-printers

the

period.

Many

book was brought out wholly, or


expense.
often

partly, at his

The managers

of

the

Aldine press

borrowed

money from him, and never

applied in vain.

He

quarrelled once with Ben-

venuto

Cellini,

but he was a close friend of

Geoff roy Tory.


tested

He was He was
'*

a scholar,
of

as

is

at-

by the elegant Latinitv


an

his
of

extant

correspondence.
little

artist

not

skill

with the pencil, as a sketch in his


"

copy

of the

Maxims

of

Erasmus proves.
perhaps Grolier him-

Fournier thought
self

that

designed the graceful arabesques and intercharacterize the covers of

woven bands which


his books.
of
"

Compared with
time,

the other bindings the

the

same
of

and of

same country,
by an unare closely
in

those

Grolier

are

distinguished

equalled and unfailing taste,"


akin
to
,

They
then
in

the

bindings
to

executed for Aldus

Venice,
the

and

the

bindings

made by
Italy,

Italian

workmen
in
;

elsewhere

in

France,

and even
superior

England

but

they
of

are
their

somehow

they have a note

BENKDF.TTl'S

ANATOMY," 1537. OCTAVO, 4X634 INCHES; BROWN CALK, (FROM SAUVAGE COLLECTION. OWNED BY MR. SAMUEL P. AVERY.)
19

1;

Bookbindings Old and New.


own
;

2
artistic

they are
;

the

result
I

of

finer

sense

and the longer

study the books bound


I

during the Italian renascence, the more


inclined
asserts
to

am
he

agree

with
"

Fournier
Italian

when
he gave

that

Grolier,
art."

with

methods,
to

created

French

Certainly

his library so definite

an individuality that the


it

volumes which composed

three hundred years


of art

ago are now treated as veritable works


they have
their

catalogue, like the pictures of

a great painter,

or

the

plates

of

great

en-

graver;

they

are
for

numbered.
its

Every existing
pedigree,
to

book bound
is

Grolier has

and

traced lovingly from catalogue


collectors.
of

catalogue

of the great

The beauty
the
lavish

the

Grolier

bindings

is

in

and

tasteful

ornamentation

of

the

sides.

In the early days of printing, and


of

when
still

the

traditions

the days of manuscripts

were dominant, the shelves


like a

of a library inclined

reading-desk, and the


sides,

handsome volumes
their ease.

lay

on their

taking

Books

then were not packed together on level shelves


as

they

are

now, shoulder

to

shoulder,

like

22

Bookbindings Old and New.


soldiers
;

common
forward

but each stately tome stood


singly,
like

by

itself

an

officer.

So

the broad sides of


invite

the ample folios seemed to

decoration.
first

The
Italy

books which Grolier had bound


in

in

are

similar

their

style

of

decoration

to those then sent forth

from the Aldine press


setting
off

few have

elegant

arabesques,

central

shield,

but most of them

have simple

geometrical designs in which interlacing bands,

formed by by
the
solid

parallel lines gilt-tooled,

are relieved

ornaments very

like those with

which
of

Aldus family then

adorned the pages

the books they were printing, and which were

suggested some, no doubt, by the illuminations


of the

old missals, but more, beyond


of the

question,

by the Oriental traditions men.

Greek workof

The

distinguishing quality
all

these

or-

naments, familiar enough to

who know
to boldness.

the

Aldine

style,

was grace united


specimen

Look
bindings.

at a

of the earlier of Grolier's

Note the simplicity


sharp
strength

of the interlaced

bands,

the

of

the

enriching

arabesques, the

skill

with which they are com-

"

COLLO(^)UiF.s

oi-'

I'.KASMrs,"

i;asI':i,,

1537.

ijiAKio,

4;;

iiMiiKS; i;ko\VN
IVES.)

CALF.

(FROM BLENHKIM COLLECTION.


23

OWNED

13Y

MR. BRAYTON

Bookbindings Old and New.


billed
;

25

and then remember that

this,

hke every
bit,

other design, was laboriously tooled bit by

and

line

by

line,

each separate ornament being


at

stamped on the cover


impress the
gold.
It
is

least

twice,
to

once to
the

leather,

and again

attach

only some understanding of the technic


art

of

an

which enables us

to

appreciate
is

its

triumphs.
ited

The
"

art

of

the

bookbinder

lim-

by the
of

tools "

he uses.
is

A
the

" tool,"

in

the

parlance
at

the trade,
of

the cut

brass

implement
device,
is

the

end

which

is

little

ornament, or part of an ornament, that


arately to be transferred to the leather.
figure,

sep-

Every
part of
tools.

every

leaf,
is

every
of

branch, every

the

desio^n,

made

one

or

more

The

binder

conceives

his

general
;

scheme
it

of

decoration, a

knowing
and

his

tools

and
of

is

by

Combination

repetition

these

tools

that

he forms his design.


that tools are style
tools
;

One might
it

almost
obvious

say

certainly

is

that the

changed form concurrently with


;

every modification of taste in bookbinding

and

a study of the tools, as they have been modified

26
during

Bookbindings Old and New. ii


tlic

past three centuries,

is

essential
of

to

any

real

understanding

of

the

art

book-

binding.

Thus we
his
library,

see that

when Grolier

becran to Qrather

the

binder used

tools copied

from

Aldine typographic devices, and impressed in


gold on the cover of a book that figure which

on the printed page was a


the finer
taste of the

solid

black.

But

Renascence soon discovthe

ered

that,

although

broad

black

of

the

Aldine devices was pleasing on a white page,

an excess

of solid

gold was less satisfactory on

the side of a book.

So they made

these tools

sometimes hollowed,

that
is,

is,

in outline merely,

which
times

lightened

them

instantly,

and

some-

azured that
the

crossed

by horizontal

lines, as in

manner

of indicating " azure " in

heraldrv.

Then,

havino-

the

same
before

device

in

three

different

values

where

thev had

but one, the adroit binder was able to vary and

combine them
easy lightness.

as

he needed solid strength

or

The

next

step

was

to
of

increase
the

the

variety

and the complication

interlacing

bands

"

IN ERIZZO, DISCORSO SOPRA LE MOUAGLIE ANTICHE," VENICE, 1559. 8VO (IMPRIMIS EXPOSITION, NO. 526. PLAT RECTO). KOUND EOR GROLIER IN THE STYLE OF THOSE OF GEOFFROY TORY.

example known of work of this class bearing the name of (From " Lcs Reliures d'Art A la Bibliois on the vorso. thtque Nationale." By permission of Edouard Rouvcyrc.)
It
is

the only

Grolier.

The device

27

Bookbindings Old and New.

29

and
fine

it

is

these interlacing bands which are

perhaps the chief characteristic of the Grolier


bindings.

Instead

of

being

indicated

by two

Hnes of gold, the bands were marked out


lines.

by three
plain

Finally,

the

bands traced by

gold

tooling

were

enriched

by

paint.
fill

Adroitly contrasted colours were chosen to

ALUINE TOOLS, HOLLOW.

ALDINE TOOLS, AZURED.

up the hollow bands which twisted above and


below
the

one

another

all

over

the

cover

of

book.

To-day these painted

ribbons

and

the gilding of the design are sadly dulled by the

years; but

when they were

fresh,

nothing could

have been more magnificently resplendent than


this

polychromatic decoration.

30

Booldiiiidings

Old and New.


of Grolier's

On

one or the other side


" lo.

books

was the leoend

Grolierii et amicorurn," a

form which M. Le Roux de Lincy thinks he

may have borrowed from


an
is

his

friend

Mai'oH,

ItaHan collector,

of

whom
of

almost nothing

known, although

his

books are greatly sought


them.

after

Grolier
"

had

several

M.

Cle-

ment de
on the

Ris, the author of a pleasant

volume

Amateurs

d'Autrefois," doubts whether

Grolier ever lent his books, despite this altruistic

declaration.

But

M. Le
not

Roux de Lincy
a few

has been able to

trace

duplicates

and

triplicates

from Grolier's
five

collection,

he
conto
in

has even found


edition

copies of the
it

same Aldine
fair

of Vergil,

whence
the

is

to

clude

that the book-lover

meant the legend


liberal

be
that

interpreted in

most
to

manner,

he stood ready

give

his

books to his

friends,

even though he was not willing to lend


Indeed,
to

them.
the last

lend

beloved

volume

is

thing a true bibliophile can be coaxed

to do, althousih the lendino; of


of charity of

books was a form

specially

recommended by a Council
as
12 12.

Paris so far back

We

know

that

BINDING EXECUTED FOR THO. MAlOLI, 1536. (FROM " MANUEL HISTORIQUE ET BII3LIOGRAPHIQUE DE L'AMATEUR DE RELIURE." BY PERMISSION OF L0N GRUEL.)
31

Bookbindings Old and New.


Grolier gave
the father of

33
to

four of
J.

the best of

his

books

A.

cle

Thou.

The books bound


as

for

Maioh

are

almost as

beautiful as the books

bound

for

Grolier, but,

M.

Marius-Michel

remarks,

Maioli

had
none.
of

some

poor
it

bindings,

and
due

Grolier
to

had

Perhaps
Maioli
"

was

also

the

example

that

Grolier chose a motto, which ran,


sit

Portio mea, Domine,

in

terra

viventium,"

modified from
mici

Psalm

cxli.

Maioli's was, " Ini-

mea

michi, non

me

michi."

Marc Laurin
and
of Maioli,

of Watervliet, a friend of Grolier

and a book-lover
"

like

them, had for his motto


In
as

Virtus

in

arduo."
the

marked

contrast

as

may

be with
is

friendly legend

on

Gro-

lier's

books

the

motto which

the
*'

learned
Ite

Scaliger borrowed

from the Vulgate,


rather to

ad

vendentes

"

"Go ye
9).

them

that sell"
__

(Matthew

xxv.

Prefixed
tion of
at

to

the

"

Catalogue of an

Exhibi-

Recent Bookbindings, i860- 1890," held


Grolier

the

Club

in

New York
styles,

in

Decem-

ber,

1890,

was a note on

in

which there

34

Bookbindings Old and


of

A'Cio.
of

was a dixision

the best

known work
rather
Italian," "

the

Renascence into three


rily

classes,

arbitra-

designated as
"

"

Aldine or

Maioli,"
to

and

Grolier."
of

The Aldine was


solid

said

have

ornaments

face

without

any shading
Arabic

whatever, and these ornaments were of


origin,

and such as were used by Aldus and


;

the other early Italian printers


said
to

the Maioli was


"

be

composed generally

of

frame-

work

of shields or medallions, with a design of


it "
;

scrollwork flowing through

and the Grolier

was said

to

be

"

an interlaced framework of geo-

metrical figures, circles, squares, and diamonds,

with

scrollwork
of

running through
of

it,

the

orna-

ments

which are

Moresque character, and

often azured."

Of

course,

classification

of

this

sort
all

is

lacking in
of

scientific

precision,
at

since

three

these
to

styles

existed

the

same

time,

and

are

be found on books bound for


is

Grolier,

although there
affected

no doubt that he most often


geometrical
patterns.

the

interlacing

That three
tinct

styles different

enough

to bear disis

names should

flourish side

by side

evi-

ITALIAN, i6TH century.

35

Bookbindings Old and New.


dence, were
artistic

37

any needed,

of

the

extraordinary

richness of the Itahan renascence.


is

Nor

this the

whole

story.

While Grolier and


art

his fellow-collectors
in
Italy,

were developing a French


Italian

and with
in

workmen, the
flourishing

art

was

taking root

France, and

lustily.

Born

in the reign of

Louis XII., Grolier died in

the reign of Charles IX., and he was a witness of

the sturdy development of art in France under

Francis

I.

and Henry
in

II.

While he was having


of the three con-

books bound

one or another

temporary

styles of Italian origin,

two

styles

were

in process of evolution

a ^5
JIL

in

France, without his

assistance,

and perhaps
approval.
is

^^Bl

JIj^

without

his

^ ^^ ^

Certainly there

now
Growith

JjL

<W

Irm,

<^

extant no volume
j

known
to

to
j

have belonged

lier decorated either

a seme (as the


call
it),

French
freI.,

^
I'OWDER WITH THE DEVICE "f the dauphin.

"

powder,"

quently used by Francis

or with the elaborately

enriched central rectangle, surrounded by a frame

38

Bookbindings Old and New.


such as we find Henr)^
II.

of rolling arabesques,

to have

been fond
"

of.
"'

In tooled

the

powder

there

is,

perhaps, a lightly
of

fillet

around the side

the book, and

perhaps a coat of arms, or some other vignette,


in

the

centre,

and

even
its

at

each

corner,

but

the binding derives the


of

decorative richness from


of

sowing broadcast
the royal
lily,

the

kings

initial,

or

or of

some other

single tool,

repeated regularly in horizontal and


ular lines.

perpendic-

Sometimes

it

contains but one device

thus repeated geometrically, and sometimes two


or
three devices
are
alternated,

and agreeably

contrasted.
"

In the hands of a feeble binder the

powder

"

degenerates easily into


;

stiff

and barren
adroitly
skil-

monotony
varied,
fully,
it

but

when
to
of

the

devices

are

and
is

made
capable

sustain

each

other

indisputable dignity and

streno^th.

A
tion

kindred

artful

employment
it

of

monogram
distinc-

and personal emblem


to the

is

which gives

beautiful

bindins^s
II.,

which bear the


triple crescent

double
of

of

Henry

and the

Diana

of Poitiers.

The famous Henri Deux

^*t.

rvc^

,f^
.r.%

si'h, ^

\\\

rri^^s

r:^:\

<c;'r:.,
,

^T^

"t*^

^'T-^

~T'

"t

1'
.-,r

^^T"
>-,-%

"rv*
.T^-'X'i

.'i^.

Ct'.^;",

/-^fri

^:-.

^'^

BINDING EXECUTED BY CLOVIS feVE FOR LOUIS XIII. (FROM " MANUEL HISTORIQUE ET BIBLIOGRAPHIQUE DE L'AMATEUR DE RELIURE." BY PERMISSION OF LEON GRUEL.) 39

" PANDECTARUxM JURIS FLORENTINI, VOL. II." BINDING WITH THE ARMS OF FRANCE SURROUNDED WITH SCROLLS, AND WITH THE CIPHER OF HENRY II. AND LMANA OF POITIERS. IN THE MAZARIN LIBRARY. (FROM " LA RELIURE FRANCAISE," BY M. MARIUS-MICHEL. BY PERMISSION OF

DAMASCENE MORGAND.)

Bookbindings Old and New.


ware, for which the
in vain, of the

43

lover of ceramic art longs

has not a rarer charm than that of some


bindings executed at the same time and

under the same inspiration.


bringing to
the

M. Marius-Michel,
under-

study a highly trained


art,

standing of the technic of bibliopegic


that there were in France under

declares
three,

Henry
and

II.

and perhaps

four, binders of extraordinary merit.


this day,
is

Their work survives to

more and

more admired, but


forever.
It
is

their

names have perished

a pity that
of

we cannot do honour

to the

memory
some
of

the

noble craftsman

who executed

the

most splendid bindings with no

other implements than the straight


fillet

^^*^

and curved gouge, disdaining


of

^^^WV
^\^
Florentini,"

aid
ever.

any engraved tools whatso-

To him we owe
folio
"

the

trans- curved gouges.

cendent

Pandectarum

Juris

now
such

in

the Mazarin Library at Paris.


asserts
of

M. Mahad
ever

rius-Michel
skill

that
"

no

binder
is

hand.

As

clay

transformed

under the fingers

of the clever sculptor, so the

44

Bookhindiiigs Old

and New.

learned arabesques, the graceful volutes, seemed


to be

born under his instruments

no one has

ever carried to such a degree the exquisite sen-

timent of form."

"VALERII MAXIMI DICTORUM FACTORUMQUE MEMORABILIUM, LIBRI IX." BOUND BY NICOLAS EVE. FROM THE LIBRARY OF DE THOU. (FROM "REMARKABLE BINDINGS IN THE BRITISH MUSEUM," BY HENRY B. WHEATLEY.)
45

II.

DE THOU AND
In
the
of

"

LE GASCON."

history

of

the

bibhopegic
of

art

the

names

book-lovers

and

bookbinders are
the

inextricably entangled.

At one moment

dom-

inant individuality

is

seen to be a collector like


it

Grolier or Mai'oli, and at the next


artisan
like
"

is

an

artist-

Le Gascon"
II.,

or

Derome.

After

the death of

Henry

the great binders of his


is

reign disappear absolutely; there


their

no trace

of

handiwork or

of their tools.

Perhaps they
of

were
art

Huguenots, as

French historians

the

have surmised, and were done to death, or


the

fled

country,

before
in

the
1598.

promulgation

of

the Edict of
fate,

Nantes

Whatever

their
art

the

tradition

was broken, and the


on
other
lines

of

bookbinding
theirs
;

developed

than

and the personality which next comes


is

into

view

that

of

collector

Jacques

Auguste De Thou.
47

48

Boo/dujidings Old
Grolier was
in

and New.
his

When
elder

clanger of

Hfe

De
his
old,

Thou's father saved him, and Grolier gave the

De Thou four of the best books of library. The son was then only nine years
for

but perhaps this was the beginning of his love

books

sacred
to

fire

which

thus

passed

from Grolierius
tolic

Thuanus by
Born
in

a sort of apos-"

succession.

1553,

De Thou
visit

trav-

elled

from 1573
In

to 1582,

paying a

in

1576

to Plantin.

1593 he was appointed to the

custody of the books of the king, Henry IV.,

succeeding
Plutarch's
"

Jacques
Lives,"

Amyot, the
and
of

translator
"

of

the

Daphnis

et

Chloe

"

of

Longus.
to

In his

new

post

De Thou

was able

save for

the nation the library of

Catherine de' Medici.


Swift
characteristically
as they
tells
;

us

that

"

some
"
;

know books
exactly,

do lords
of

learn their titles

and then brag


always

their

acquaintance
of

and there are


sort.

book-collectors

this

But
;

De Thou was
them

a book-lover of another
well,

kind

he knew his books, he used them


;

he lived with

and

to-day

he

lives

by

the fame they have given him, since he died in

BINDING EXECUTED BY NICOLAS EVE, I578. (FROM " MANUEL lUSTORIQUE ET BIBLIOGRAPHIQUE DE L'AMATEUR DE RELIURE." BY PERMISSION OF LEON GRUEL.)
51

Bookbindings Old and New.


161
his
7.

53

It

is

the love of books which has saved


oblivion, as

name from
in

M. Clement de Ris
gossip

declares
"

his

pleasant
"

about

the

Amateurs

d'Autrefois."

Distinguished

mag-

istrate,

remarkable writer, historian of rare merit,

statesman of exceptional

common
is

sense and of

great foresight, what survives

the bibliophile.
in

Who

remembers

that

he took part

the ab-

juring of

Henry

IV., or that

he was one of the


Edict of Nantes
t

most active negotiators

of the
'

No
'

one.
that
it.

Who

reads the

History of his
as

Time

'

grand and

faithful history,'

Bossuet

called

Again, no one.

But ask any petty

dealer

in

second-hand books what the emblem


his books.
of

was with which he marked

He
letter.

will

answer you without the error


collector,
if

A
is

he have but an elevated


respect
for

taste,

moved by
driftwood

the

past

he seeks the

of

time which the present despises.


the debt
of

The

future pays

the past

"

and

hands the

collector's

name down

to posterity.

It

was towards the end

of the reign of Charles

IX., after the death of Grolier (1565),

that

we

54

Bookbindings Old and New.


specimens of a new
style.

find the first


of a

The

side
of

book was now covered by a framework

small compartments formed by doublefilleted

bands.

At

first

these

comIII.

partments were empty, and Henry

added

to the barren severity of the de-

sign by filling the central space with a

stamp representing the

crucifixion.

As

Henry H. put

the

bow and arrows and


^>:ij^

triple crescents of the

i4r4^

unchaste

Diana

on -^^^i^^W^
'^ "^''"^ branches.
life

the royal bindings, so

the sombre

Henry

HI., taking

sadly

because of his lost love, Mary of Cleves,

was fond
of death's
lilies

also of a

powder

of tears

and

heads scattered through the

of

France.

So solemn

a style of
sister,

decoration did not tempt his


earet
TOOLS USED
iN THE " FAN-

Maras

of

Valois,

afterward

known

Queen Margot, and she


J

preferred a pow-

ii-jarcTuerites,

each flower being ^

FARES."

framed
her,
also,

in

an oblong wreath.

For

the cold austerity of the geo-

metrically

distributed

compartments was done

F;<KNCH, 16TII CENTURY.

ATTRIBUTED TO CLOVIS EVE; liELONI^ED TO MARGUERITE DE VALOIS.


55

Bookbindings Old and New.


away
with,

57

and while the same regular frameretained,


all

work was

the hollow spaces within

and without the


fillets,

figures,

formed by the double


little

were

filled

with

branches,

with

spiral vines,
light, airy,

and with a multitude

of tiny tools,

and graceful.

These are the bindings


of the

which we find on the best Thou.

books

of

De
are

These

are

the

bindings

which
Clovis,

credited to the

Eves,

Nicolas and
royal binders

two

brothers
to

who were the Whether or 1627.


credit
for

from 1578

not they are entitled to


beautiful

the

the

many
in

bindings

rather

rashly attributed to

them

is

one
of

of the
art.
"

many moot

points

the

history

the

These are the bindings now known

as

"

fanfares
title

(because that was the chief word in the

of

an old book which


style for

Thou^?enin

bound

in

this

Charles Nodier during the Restoration),

These are the bindings which served as models


to that greatest of binders,

who
so

is

known

to us

as

"

Le Gascon," and who,

M. Marius-Michel

surmises,
tice of

may have been a pupil or an apprenthe binders who worked for De Thou.


58

Bookbindings Old and New.


Grolier, perhaps
"

After

Le Gascon

"

is

the

foremost personality in the history of bookbinding


;

GroHer was not

a binder himself

he was a

collector,

an art-patron, and when applied to him

the term has no taint of the offensiveness which

may

attach to

it

nowadays
the

and, as
of

it

happens,

we do not know
artisans

names
for

any

of the artist-

who worked
the

Grolier,

and
of

to

whom
most
" all

we owe
Gascon
"

many

masterpieces

the

magnificent collection ever yet attempted.

Le

was himself a binder, but


him.
not
it

this

is

we
the

know about
whether or
immortal
"

We
was

do not know

for

sure

he who covered

Guirlande de Julie"; we do not even


"

know whether
recalling his

Le Gascon

"

was

his patronymic,
it

or a mere nickname.

Probably
origin.

is

a sobriquet

Gascon

M. Leon Gruel,
"

in his

most interesting
1'

"

Man-

uel Historique et Bibliographique de

Amateur
1887),

de Reliure

(Paris

Gruel

&

Engelmann.
of

one
the

of

the most valuable


writer

many volumes
under
these
contri-

present
in

has

placed
of

bution

the
a

preparation

pages,

reproduces

binding

signed

by

Florimond

"iRIANUS,
)

DE VENATIONE."

PARIS, 1644.

IN QUAKiw. FLAT RECTO.)


This piece

^,.ii i^i.viKS

EXPOSITION, NO.

619.

Bound by Eve

with the arms of Gaston of Orleans, often attributed to the mysterious


is

G;con," but which


hjisition
(

Eve's, nevertheless.

is

curious in this respect, that

it

" Le marks the

between the flowered decoration of Eve and the pointed foliages of


la

|om

"

Les Reliures d'Art k

BibliothSque Nationale."

By permission

of

" Le Gascon." Edouard Rouveyre.)

59

Bookbindings Old and New.

6i

Badier (now in the National Library in Paris),

and

draws

attention
in

to

the

extraordinary

re-

semblance

style

which

this

binding

bears

to the bindings generally ascribed to "

Le Gas-

con."

M. Gruel ventured the hypothesis that


real

Florimond Badier might be the

name

of the

man whose nickname was


Gruel), in his (Paris:
iSSo),

"

Le Gascon."

But M.
(as is

Marius- Michel, a practical binder himself

M.

book about "La Reliure Fran9aise"


et

Damascene Morgand
book
to

Charles Fatout.

another

which the writer owes


confess,

more than he can here


Michel had declared
Badier's to be the
itator of "
this

M.

Marius-

binding of Florimond
of

handiwork

some clumsy im-

Le Gascon," who had copied even the

dotted outline of a

human head which some have


decide

taken to be in some sort the trade-mark of the


master.

Who
?

shall

when

decorators

disagree
If

layman may hazard an opinion,

it

would

be to the effect that although Florimond Badier

might well be the true name of


yet the binding in question
is

"

Le Gascon,"

not equal to the

best of those accredited to the

supreme

artist of

62

Bookbindings Old and New.


and splendoiir
is

bibliopegy, those marvels of taste

wherein the utmost luxury of gilding


allowed
glaring.
to

never

become

vulgar,

tawdry,

or

even

That
artists

"

Le Gascon

"

is

the foremost of
a

all

the
is

who have embellished


of
his

book-cover

the

verdict

fellow-craftsmen.

M. Gruel

does not yield to M. Marius-Michel in admiration of the magnificent masterpieces

which came
all

from the hands

of "

Le Gascon."

In
"

that

M.

Marius-Michel has written about


there
is

Le Gascon"
Mr.
;

a glow

of

devoted
is

enthusiasm.
in

William

Matthews

as

swift
I

praise

and

Mr. Cobden-Sanderson, when

asked him
all

whom
posi-

he held to be the greatest


not hesitate, but answered
tively, "

of

binders, did

promptly and

Le Gascon."
is

As Keats
"

has been called


"

the poets' poet, so


binders' bookbinder.

Le Gascon
it

the book-

But

does not need the

trained eye of the expert to discover his surpass-

ing charm, the richness of his gilding, and the


unfailing delicacy and distinction of his design.

Yet

the

most
little

characteristic

of
of

his

bindins^s

differs

but

from those

his

immediate

FRENCH, 17TH CENTURY.

ATTRIBUTED TO " LE GASCON.'


63

Bookbindm^s Old and New.


predecessors

65
mere

in

so

far

at

least

as

the

structure and outline of the decoration are con-

cerned.

It

was only by slow degrees that he


individuality,

developed his own


to the

and

end

of his career

he employed

the formal framework of the fanfares

whenever he had

to

do a binding

of

exceptional importance.

Now

and again, however, he

pre-

ferred a less complicated design,

and

he used a

lace-like

border and a broad

rectangular framework, boldly tooled,

cf

and

almost

filled

with

dazzling

array of coruscating spirals, which set


off the red leather of the smaller central

space,

containing generally
of

the

coat-of-arms
It

the

fortunate

owner.
in-

%
)

was only by degrees that he


his

troduced what was almost


innovation
line

only

tools

in

which a dotted
fillet.

replaced

the simple
of

The

^K
TOOLS OF LE GASCON.'

full-face
inirs

device
first

the

Aldine bindto
lif^hten
it

was

azured,

little,

and then hollowed

out,

leavint^

it

in

"

66

Bookbindings Old and New.


;

outline only

and now

it

was made

still

airier,

when
points.
of

it

appeared only as a string

of

tiny gilt

This dotted

line
it

is

the

characteristic

"Le Gascon," and

gives their incomparable


his

brilliancy to
is

the best of

bindings.

But

it

merely one of the implements


of

at the

com-

mand
almost

his

skill

and
an

taste,
artist

and he would be
if

as

great

he

had

not

happened on

this particular

improvement.
that
"

M. Marius-Michel thinks
in his

Le Gascon

youth must have been familiar with the


in

best
his

bindings

the library of
for

De Thou.
a

In

manhood he worked
it

Cardinal IMazarin,
as

and

is

worthy
France

of
in

note,

proof

of

the

mastery
Italy,

of

an

art

borrowed

from
an
to

that

when Cardinal Mazarin


in

(himself

Italian)

was

Rome
a

in

1643,

he

sent

Paris

for

workmen

to bind his

books.

Barely
I.

century and

quarter

earlier,

Francis

and Grolier had been forced


binders into France.
the
cardinal

to import
"

Italian
"

Perhaps
of his
is

Le Gascon

lent

some

own

apprentices.

That he had

assistants

obvious.
of

No one
the

man

could

satisfy

the

demands

book-

Bookbindings Old and New.


lovers
that
of

67
thinks

his

time.

M.

Marius- Michel
certain

he can pick out


of

bindings

four
now
he
the
tools

volumes
in the

Thomas Aquinas,
as

for example,

Mazarin Library
apprentices,

which
he

were the work


that
of

of

these

believes

can discern in these books the tools


master,
of "

but not
"

his

skill

of touch.

The

Le Gascon
them
qui veut.

are graceful in themselves, but

to

use

as

he

used

them

ne

faict ce

totir

III.

PADELOUP AND DEROME.

When
of

Louis XIV. succeeded to the throne

France,
in
"

and began the


splendour and

long

reign
in

which
sadness,

opened
probably
king;

ended
still

Le Gascon
the

"

was

binder to the
greatest
of

but

influence

of

the

bibliopegic artists diminished as the years went


on,

and as the proud king sought


art,

to

dominate
in himself

every
as the
lio-ht.

and

to centre
all

all

things

sun from which

things were to draw

The
over-gilt

reio:n

of

Louis

XIV.
;

was

the

golden age of
the

French
age
of
art

literature

it

was but

French

binding.

The
of the

characteristic of the

toward the end

long rule of the Grand


luxury
of

Monarch was a

brutal

heavy

gilding.
in

The
fashion

king's
as

own

books were bound


the
sive

leaden as
as

architecture
of

of

Versailles,
pride.
68

and

expres-

the

royal

The

royal

arms,

Bookbindmgs Old and New.


exaggerated
out
of
all

69
were

proportion,

stamped on the centre


and they were
equally
girt

of the side

of a book,

about by a broad border,


equally
dull.

emphatic
often

and

These

borders were

imprinted by a roulette^ a
in

wheel on which a pattern was incised

the

same way
tians

that the cylinder-rings

of

the

Egyp-

were engraved.

The
as

use

of the roll, repeating the

same
it

motive

indefinitely

is

rolled over the

leather,

is

in-

defensible
of art;

it

is

the negation
the
is

it

destroys

free

play

of

hand

which

the

very essence of handicraft.

THREE SEVENTEENTHCENTURY BORDERS.

The

fashion

set
;

by the king

was
of

copied

by the courtiers

and on most

the
little

books

bound under Louis XIV. we

find

more

than a border around the margin, and a coatof-arms


.was
in

the

centre.

Sometimes enough
in

wheel
a

prepared

broad

to
;

imprint

heavy wreath three inches


there

width

sometimes
one
them-

would
the

be

two or
the

three

borders

within

other,

corners

forming

70
selves

Bookbindings Old and New.


as

best

they

could,

haphazard

and
heavy

happy-go-lucky.

Sometimes huge

and

corner-pieces were employed.

Sometimes even

the whole side of a book was engraved in the

same heavy
task

style,

thus

reducing
of

the

binder's

almost
the

to

the

level

day-laborer's.

When
lifeless

public

accepts
for

mechanical and

substitute

artistic
is

and

individual
of

handicraft,
artistic

the

result

deadening

the the

impulse,

and

decadence

into

inertia of

commonplace.

Possibly
to

we may

fairly

charge
of

this

decline

the

inexorable
there

self-assertion

the

king;
in

certainly

was no great

bookbinder

France while Louis XIV. was on the throne,

and no

great

book-lover.

His reign

is

not
of

distinguished
Grolier or of a

by the development either


"

Le Gascon."
under
the
"

Yet

it

was while
of

he

ruled

that,

influence

the

traditions bequeathed

by

Le Gascon,"
the

the tools

known

to

book-lovers
the

as

fers

du

dixtools,

septieme

siecle,

seventeenth-century
;

were brought into use


continue
in

and these lovely


day,

tools

use

to

this

and

form

the

Bookbindings Old and New.


basis of the stock In

trade of the best binders

of the nineteenth century.

And
also,

it

was

in

the

reign

of

Louis

XIV.,

by sheer reaction against the leaden showof

iness

the

fashion

set

by
of

the

king,

that

there

arose

the simple

style

binding called
of

after Jansen,

and adopted by the sect


Jansenists

Port-

Royal.
soberly,
sides,

The
with
relying
in

bound

their

books

no
on

gilding
the

whatsoever
beauty

on
of

the
the
clad,

simple

leather

which

their

volumes
inside

were
border
its

and

decorating
as
to
it

only

the

the
resemunderin

dentelle,

was

called,

from

blance

delicate

lacework.
better

These
bound,

decorated

books

were

technical sense,

than those of

an

earlier day,

however much more beautiful the older books


were to the eye.
for example,

The books bound by


more
solidly

Boyet,

toward the end of the seventeenth


prepared,

century,
carefully

were
sewn,

more

more cautiously covered, than


from the

those

sent forth

workshops

of

his
of

immediate

predecessors.

The

Boyets,
the

one

whom

in

1733 was binder to

king,

kept

72

Bookbindings Old and New.


Le Gascon," and although
and
sustained
their
in

alive the traditions of "

they
their

were

not

encouraged

more
skill

artistic

endeavours, as

indis-

putable

deserved, yet they are the bridge


of
"

from the days

Le Gascon

"

to those of the

Padeloups and the Deromes.


Shortly
after the

death of Louis
the

XIV. was
"

produced

one

of

most remarkable bindthe art


is

ings in the history of


et

the

Daphnis
the

Chloe"
of

of

1715,

which

adorned with

arms
the

the regent, and which was recently in


collection.
it

Quentin-Bauchard
is

Its

chief

characteristic
it

that

is

mosaic

that

has

polychromatic decoration formed by

inlaid leathers of various colours.

The

coloured
varied
there

bindings
tints

of

Grolier's
of

time owed

their

to

bands

paint,

and

although

had been now and again attempts


there
"

at inlaying,

had been
et

no

such

bold

effort

as

this

Daphnis

Chloe," attributed

generally

to
of

Nicolas

Padeloup,

one

of

long family

binders, existing for

more than a century and


regency,
to

a half.
or
of

binding in mosaic of the

Louis

XV.,

is

generally

credited

"OFFICE DE LA SEMAINE SAINTE." KUUNl) liY N. I'AUEI.OUr. (FROM "REMARKABLE BINDINGS IN THE BRITISH MUSEUM," BY HENRY B.

WHEATLEY.)
73

Bookbindings Old and New.

75

Padeloup, just as a picture with a white horse


is

often

ascribed

to

Wouwerman

without
"

further warrant.
nis
et

The
was

decoration of the

Daph-

Chloe

"

obviously inspired

by the

designs of the contemporary potters.

And

here

occasion
all

serves

to

say

that

the

interdependence of

the decorative arts, their

varying influence one


seen
in

upon the
of

other,

can be

the

history

bookbinding,
else.

perhaps

more
art

clearly than
of

anywhere

The modern
in

bookbinding
century
in

began
Venice,

boldly

the

fifteenth

which had close which many


attracted,

relations with

the Orient, and to

Greek and Arab workmen had been


bringing with them their
of decoration.

theories
desio-ns O

and habits
of

Geometric
all

Arabic

origin

are

abundant on

the
at

objects
this

made
es-

by Venetian
pecially
city of

handicraftsmen

time,

on the
islands

fragile glassware
is
still

for

which the

famous

and M. Marius-

Michel

reproduced
tiles

decorative the

band

taken
of

from the
a mosque
the

which adorned
Constantinople,
embroideries,

interior

in

and applied also


then
given
as

Venetian

76
model

Bookbiiidhigs Old
in

and New.

volume

of

Andrea Guadagnino,
Italian

promptly

copied

by the

bookbinders,

and soon borrowed

by their French brethren.

At

first,

very naturally, the decoration of the

outside

of

books was influenced by the


their insides,

deco-

ration of

and

we

find

bindings

the

design of which
the
rich

was obviously suggested


lavish

by

and

embellishment

of

mediaeval manuscripts, and others adorned with


patterns
rate
ters.

modified

but slightly from the elabothe


early
as

typographic ornaments of

prin-

The

Aldi

were

binders

well

as

printers,

and the same devices decorated


both
the

their

noble folios
frey

within

and without.
of of
"

GeofFleury,"

Tory,

author
the the
art

Champ
of

who

reformed

type-founding

and

brought
letter,

about
a

abandonment

blackbinder.

was

printer

who was

also

He

is

supposed to have w^orked for his conMr. Story makes

temporary, Grolier.
declare
:

Raphael

It

seems to
all

me
tree,

All

arts are

one
it

branches on one

All fingers, as

were,

upon one hand.

" ARIOSTO,

ORLANDO

FURIOSO."

YOUNGER. EIGHTEENTH CENTURY. MORGAND.)

VENICE, 1584. BINDING OF DEROME THE (BY PERMISSION OF DAMASCENE


77

Bookbindings Old and New.


The
least,
is

79
arts,

solidarity

of

the

decorative
the
hints

at

indisputable.

Even
the

casual
of

ob-

server

cannot but

note

design with

borrowed
interest,

and and

lent,

and

paid

back

borrowed

again.

Under

Louis
flour-

XIII.,
ished,
of the suit

for

example,

when

lace-making
over
not

the

bookbinders

took

a few
to
art.

lace-makers' designs, modifying

them

the

conditions
it

of

the
to

bibliopegic
see

Perhaps
of

is

not

fanciful
of in

something
of

the

formal grace
reflected

the stately gardens

Le Notre

the covers of the sump-

tuous tomes of Louis XIV., influenced for the


worse,
as

these

were,

by the

heavy

hand

of

Lebrun.

As we
"

turn the pages of M. Marius- Michel's

instructive

and interesting essay, we note that


tools

Le Gascon " used

one design

of

which
;

w*
that

suggested by contemporary embroideries


Padeloup,

with a duller sense of

fitness,
;

found

models

in

ecclesiastical stained-glass

and that

Derome
varied

was

influenced

by
of

the
the

remarkably
master
iron-

and

skilful

work

workers

of the day.

8o

Bookbindings Old and New.


close

The
is

interaction of

the decorative
find

arts

made obvious again when we


certain

experts

Hke M. Marius-Michel seeking


of of in

for

the

source
to
re-

the the
in

florid

designs
pottery

attributed
of

Padeloup
gency,

painted
the

the

and

symmetrically
of

disposed

parterres of the

great gardens

Louis XIV.
of

and Louis XV.


loup
tion
(or

Perhaps the mosaics

Pade-

at

any rate the turning


are

of his atten-

to

mosaic)

due

to

the

example

of

Boule,

who

died only in 1732, and


art

who

carried

to the highest perfection the


in

of

incrusting

wood designs
of ivory.

of

gold and of brass, of shell

and

The main
sufficient sense

defect
of

of

Padeloup

was an

in-

form.
are

Some
as

of these

floral

designs

in

mosiac
the

unrelated
as

to

the

shape

of

book they decorate

though

they had been cut out of an embroidered silk


or

printed

calico.

Some
the

of

them have

monotonous
as

repetition of

same framework,
roll

though they were torn from a

of wall-

paper.

Form and symmetry, composition and

balance

these

are essentials of decorative art.

FRENCH, i8TH CENTURY.


8i

liY

DEROME.

Bookbindings Old and New.


Most
of

'^2)

Padeloup's

designs
;

are

fragmentary

they lack unity of motive


to

they have no centre dtdy sub-

which the

rest of the decoration is

ordinate.
others,

Some

of

them, less pretentious than

have a quality of their own.

Beyond

all

question they are characteristic of their period.


In the
style,

main they are heavy, and they lack


grace.

skill,

Style

they lack most plentifully,

for

Padeloup was as eclectic as a quack-doctor.

He

would mingle

in

the

cover of

any

one

unfortunate

book

tools

and methods borrowed


of the art.

from the whole history


I

confess

to

having fallen

into

popular

terror here, in speaking of Padeloup as though he

were a single
were,
first

entity, despite
last,

the fact that there


of

and

twelve

the

Padeloups.

And

of the

Derome
were

dynasty, which for a while


less

was contemporaneous, there were no


fourteen
binders.

than
as

who

more or
greatest

less

known
these

Perhaps the

of

was

Nicolas Denis Derome,


in
1

who was
generally

received master

76 1,

and who

is

known

as

the

Younger Derome.

The Younger Derome was who

a rapid binder, a merit most rare in those

84

Bookbindings Old and New.


;

practise this craft

and he was an honest workof his

man, loyally following the mandates


tomers.
stance.

cus-

His

bindings

have solidity

and sub-

But he was too fond

of the knife, and,

like a cruel surgeon, too careless in its use.

He

cut to the c|uick, and

many

a beautiful book has

died under his treatment.

Margins and edges


;

were shorn away with merciless persistence


tall

no

copies ever

left his

shop.

Dibdin

cries out

against

Derome

again and again, and

we cannot

but feel that the cutting-iron of the binder had


pierced
the soul of
that
travelling

book-lover.
" Pris-

The Englishman
cianus," printed
lost a

declares that a folio of


of

by John

Spires in 1470, had


half

head and shoulders, and that a good

of the miniatures are cut into at the top.


is

This
is

a crime for which the guillotine


fit

itself

the

only

punishment.
is

As
all

it

the custom to attribute to Padeloup

the mosaics of the period, so to


all

Derome

are

credited

the

bindings whereon we see the


tool wherein a
life

fer a V oiscau, a gracefully cut

tiny bird with outstretched wings gives


vivacity
to

and
In

the

decoration

of

the

cover.

Bookbindings Old and New.


Derome's hands
erally
of
this

85

decoration consisted gena

dentelle,

lacework

border

obvi-

ously
varied

modelled

on the marvellously easy and


of

wrought-iron

the

French

smiths of

the middle of the eighteenth century.

Nothing
its

could be at once lighter and firmer, and of

kind more charming, than the best of the open-

work borders
tooled

of

Derome,

solidly

|^
^'^^''^ ^'^^^^-

on broad morocco. borrowed from

And ^wC^L^L^
the ^

the

motives,

artist-artisans

who were
of

forging the gates and

makino- the locks

the

French connoisseurs

of that century, are capable of infinite variation.

Probably there are no two bindings of Derome's


exactly alike.

A UEKUME UOliDEK.

86
I

Boo/cbindings Old
confess that
I

and New.

have here praised Derome


the

more warmly than do


whose
feet
I

French

critics
I

at

sit,

and whose learned

taste

envy,
to be

Derome's work seems


preferable
loup's
;

to

me
to

at

all

points

Pade-

easier,

more
in a

graceful,

more

appropriate
orative.

in

word, more dec-

After

Padelonp and

De-

rome the eighteenth century had


no
binder

France over whose

work we need dwell now.

The

art

was getting clumsy- and sluggish.


Strangely enough,
the
vignettists,

even

at the

height of their vogue,

did not inspire those

who

decorated

the outsides of the volumes, the insides of

which they had

illustrated

with such dainty and delicious fan-

,iKMm

tasy.

Risen was a friend of a binder


the
friend-

t^iy*^

named Dubuisson, but

'''TooLr''' ship had no appreciable effect upon Dubuisson's handiwork. Gravelot designed the
tools to be used

on the sides and back


Contes
" of

of the

volumes

of his

"

La Fontaine

(1762),

Bookbindings Old and New.


of

87

his

Racine

(1768),

and

of to

his

Corneille
lost

(1771); but his

hand seems

have

some-

what
for

of

its
it

cunning when

it

undertook a task

which

had no

training.

At
his
is

least so

M.

Marius-Michel
taste

thinks,

and

trained

which a layman may wisely

follow.

Co-

chin did not suggest a chaste disorder to those

who bound
his

the
plates

books he had adorned with


;

delicate

nor did

Moreau

and

if

a French decorative artist of the

last

century

could not be stimulated


effort

by Moreau, then the

was hopeless.

<>
EIGHTEENTH CENTURY TOOLS.

SS
It
is

Bookbindings Old and New.


not a treatise on bookbinding that
art,
I

have

here attempted, or a history of the


a set and

or even

formal essay.

All

have sought to

do

is

to jot

down

a few stray notes


to

to gossip

about those
Beautiful.

who have helped

make
the

the

Book
in

What

have tried to show

my
of

rambling

paragraphs,

and

in
is

illustrations

chosen to accompany them,


styles,

the sequence

and the way one

style

was evolved from


one to the other.

another, and their

relations

At

first

we

find

almost

simultaneously
Grolier
the

the

Aldine and

the
styles.

Mai'oli,

the

and the

Henry

II.,

Then

followed

powder

(which probably suggested the wreaths), the fanfares


of "
of

the

Eves,

and the
Finally

brilliant

fantasies

Le Gascon."

came Padeloup with


from

his

polychromatic mosaics (some of them derivtheir

ing

monotonous

framework

the

wreaths and the powder), and Derome with his


vigorous borders.
history
of

And

as
I

wandered down the


have tried
to

bookbinding,

show
suc-

that the key to any understanding of

the

ceeding styles
tools of

is

to be

found in a study

of the

each epoch.

Bookbindings Old and New.


That the names
of the gifted bookbinders

89
and

devoted book-lovers which came to the end of

my
ful

pen

in the course of

my

stroll

down
is

the vista

of bibliopegy

were nearly

all

French

not wil-

on

my

part,

but inevitable.

The

art of
if

bookit

binding was cradled in

France, even
it

was

born elsewhere, and in France


rity.

grew

to

matu-

Italy shared the struggle with


fell

France in

the beginning, but soon

behind exhausted.

Germany invented

the book-plate to paste inside

a volume, in default of the skill so to adorn the

volume externally that no man should doubt


its

ownership.

England has had but one binder

Roger

Payne

that
of the

even the insular enthu-

siasm of his compatriots would dare to set beside


the galaxy of bibliopegic stars of France.

The supremacy
this art is

French

in the history of

shown

in the catalogues of every great


;

book-sale and of every great library


of the collection are sure to

the

gems

be the work of one


to

or another of the

Frenchmen

whose unrivalled

attainments

have once more called attention


It
is

in these pages.

revealed

yet again

by a
his-

comparison of the

illustrations in the

many

90
torical

Bookbindings Old and New.


accounts of the
art,
;

French and German,


nearly
nine-tenths
of

British

and

American

the bindings chosen for reproduction are French.

And,

after enjoying these,

we

are often

led

to

wonder why
enough
to

misplaced patriotism was blind

expose the other tenth to a damaging

comparison.

These

remarks,

of

course,

apply

only to the binders whose work was done before


the

beginning

of

the

nineteenth century.

Of

late years the superiority of

French binders has


has not been
in

been undisputable, but


whelming.
Britain

it

over-

There
in the

are

at

present

Great

and

United States binders

whom
and
vol-

no one has a right


about

to pass over in silence,

whom

shall

gossip again
it

in

this
first

ume

but in the past

was France

and

the rest nowhere.

ENGLISH, iSTH CENTURY.


91

ROGER PAYNE.

BOOKBINDINGS OF THE
PRESENT.

BOOKBINDINGS OF THE PRESENT.

I.

THE TECHNIC OF THE CRAFT.

As

there

is

unfortunately

no word

in

the

EngHsh language
dignified,

to describe those familiar, yet


in

poems which

France are known as


far
is

vers dc societe,
"

and which are and as there

above ordinary

society verse,"

no single term

to
in

denote the short-story, the form of fiction

which we Americans have been most abunis

dant and successful, so also

there need

in

English of a recognized phrase for the defining


each of the two halves of bibliopegic
art.

Book-

binding consists of two wholly distinct operations,


"

known

to the expert as

"forwarding" and

finishing."

Forwarding
for
its

is

the proper prepara-

tion of a

book

cover and the putting on


95

96

Bookbindings Old and New.


;

of that cover

finishing
of

is

the decoration of the


it

sides

and back

the book after


is

has been
of
of

covered.

Forwarding, therefore,

the task

an an

artisan, while finishing


artist.

must be the work

Mr.

WilHam Matthews, than whom


to express

there

is

no one more competent


has declared
that
is

an opinion,
neatly

"

book,

when

and

cleanly covered,
tion without

in a

very satisfactory condi-

any finishing or decorating."

Many
vol-

book-lovers agree wdth the foremost of Ameri-

can bookbinders, and order their precious

umes

to be soberly clad in plain


it is

morocco.

The
maxi-

Jansenist binding, as

called after the leader

of the recluses of Port-Royal, calls for the

mum mum

of of

care in the forwarding, and the mini-

gilding

or

other

decoration

'

of

the

finisher.

Mr. Matthews went even further,

quote

from his lecture on


Considered,"
of in

"

Bookbinding Practically

delivered before the Grolier Club


in

New York
1889, steps

1885, and by the club printed

and

having

described
is

the

succes-

sive

by which a book

prepared, for-

Bookbindings Old and New.


warded,

97
:

and

covered

with

leather,

said
is

" I

now

declare the book in this condition


skilfully

bound,

and he w4io has

mastered these various


passed
called

processes through which a volume has


deserves the

name

of binder;
it,

he

who

is

upon

to
is

decorate

finisher.
:

At

present

the

custom
is

the reverse

the finisher or decorator

credited with

being the binder, whereas he

has done none of the binding."

Now,
of this

there

is

no

doubt

that
is

the

protest

accomplished craftsman
is

well founded.
is

But the error


uprooting
of a
it

so old that there

no hope

of

at this late day.

When we
we

speak

book

as beautifully bound,
of

are praising

the

work

the

man who

designed and exe-

cuted the decoration of the cover, not the labour


of the

man who clothed the book with leather, and who bbviously enough was really its binder. Of course, in a great many instances forwarder
and finisher are one and the same person.
Per-

haps this was the case with the books which are
catalogued as
it is

"

bound by Le Gascon," although


"Le Gascon
the
" is

as a finisher that

unrivalled,

and

certainly

it

is

case

with

the

books

98

Bookbindings Old and New.

bound by Mr. Cobden-Sanderson, who himself


attends
to

every detail

of

preparing and

for-

warding, aided only by his wife.

The French
and,
in

term

for

"finisher"
of

is

"gilder,"

his

account

French

bookbinding,
is

M.

Marius-

Michel, a dorciw himself,


credit for a delicate
artist

very careful to give


to
it.

decoration
gilded
is

the
It
is

special

who designed and

greatly

to be regretted that there

in

popular use only

one word to designate the two distinct operations.

Although these notes on the


binding as
it

art

of

bookto

is

practised

to-day

have

do

with the work of the

finisher the

artist

who

adorns the exterior of a volume, and not with


the
of for

more humble, but not


the forwarder
decoration,

less important,

labour
it

the
may

artisan

who

prepares

it

not

be amiss to begin

by setting forth the


undergoes
at

series of operations a
first
;

book

the hands
the finisher

of

the forwarder,

and then
tion
of

of

and
I

in this

explana-

technical
of

processes
bibliopegic

shall
art,

follow two

masters

the

Mr. William

Matthews, from whose lecture before the Gro-

"HISTORY, THEORY, AND PRACTICE OF ILLUMINATING." LONDON, 1861.

DIGKY WYATT,
inlaid with varie-

Bound by Zaehnsdorf.

Crimson morocco, wide borders,


in

gated leathers in a scroll pattern, bold

design

lined with dark green

morocco

with red border, the whole ornamented with vines

and

flowers.

Owned by Mr.

Samuel

P.

Avery.

99

Bookbindings Old and New.


lier

loi

Club

have already quoted, and Mr. Joseph


"

W.
of
in

Zaehnsdorf, whose handbook of

The Art

Bookbinding
1S90.

"

came

forth in a second edition

Every book-lover should understand

the principles of the art of the bookbinder, and


the practices of the craft
;

appreciation

is

best

founded on knowledge.
Often a volume comes into the hands of the
binder already bound.

The books

of

American

publishers are issued in substantial cloth covers

intended to
British
rary,

be permament.
are
is

The bindings

of

publishers

frequently

more tempo-

and the book

loosely cased in the cloth


to

cover, the

owner being expected

rebind in
of

leather an}^
preservation.

volume which he deems worthy

The books

of

French publishers

are issued in paper covers, merely stitched,


so are
as

and

most

of those of the-

German

publishers
of his early

Lord Houghton recorded on one


Jn

visits, "

Germany

all

the books are in sheets

and

all

the beds without."


first

The
book
cover,
is

thing the binder has to do

if

the

already

bound

is

to

remove the cloth


the

and

then very carefully to collate

I02
\'olume
table
of

Bookbindings Old and New.


page by page,
contents,
list

to
of

see

if

title,

preface,
notes,

illustrations,

index,
fect

maps,
in

plates,
If

are

each
be,

and

all

per-

and

place.
to

need

the sheets are


true
;

refolded
the}^

so as

make

the pages
rolled

then

are
is

beaten
a

by hand, or

in a press,
far

which
less

more hurried method, and by


;

workmanlike

the

beating being to comthe

pact the pages, and

to give

book

solidity

and strength.

After the beating, the loose maps

and

illustrations,

mounted on
proper
to

linen guards, are

inserted

in

their

places.

Then

the

sheets

are

sewn

the

bands,

and

generally

there should be no saw-cuts in the back of the

book,

and the
it it

sewing
called,

should
"

not be

"

sunk-

band," as
flexible as

is

but

raised-band," and as

is

firm.
is

The volume
warder,

now prepared
on the work
the

for
to

the

for-

who
it

carries

the point

where

is

ready for

finisher.
;

The

for-

warder attaches the end-papers


back of the book, and rounds
niill
it
;

he glues the
he squares the

boards which are to serve as the sides of

the book, and he laces

them

in

by means

of

the

Bookbindings Old and New.


bands
to

103

which the sheets have been sewn.


eye

The
all

forwarder needs a steady hand, and, above


things,
to

true

"

the

important principle
is

be observed in forwarding

triteness.

The

form and shape of the book


forwarder" (Matthews,
p. 35).

depend on the

The volume thus


a press
;

far

advanced

is

clamped

in

and

it

is

allowed to repose for a while

and

to gain strength.

Then
is

the edges are cut,

or at least the top edge

cut, the

other margins

being better
eye
;

left

intact,

to

delight the owner's

as

it

is

only on top that a volume standit

ing on a shelf can accumulate dust,


the

is

only
so

top

edge that

needs to be smoothed
be blown
off or
it

that the dust can


at will.

wiped away

The

cut edges, be

the top only, or

top,

bottom, and fore edge, are then marbled or


;

gilded

sometimes

they are

gilded
of

over mar-

bling, to the

added richness

the work.
is

The
conto

back

is

then lined, and,

when

the binder
joint
is

scientious, a

narrow leather
for the

affixed,

act as a hinge
is

covers.

The headband

woven
or

in.

After that the leather

morocco,
tightly

calf,

what

not

is

stretched

and

04

Bookbindings Old and New.


fast.

snugly over the book, and glued

When
is

the end-papers are pasted to the covers, the task


of the forwarder
is

done, and the book


is

ready

for the finisher

who
sides

to decorate
is

it.

What
which
to
its
is

the finisher
the

has to do

to invent

design for

and back

of

the volume
its

appropriate to the book, to


its
it

subject,

owner, to

size,
is

and

to

the

kind

of

leather with which

covered.

This design

must be one which can be worked out with the


implements
at his

command.

Every

artist

must

consider the physical limitations of the art he


practises,

and the chief limitation


a

of the artist

who

decorates
it

book

is

that
of

the

desio-n

he

invents for

must be capable

accomplishment
line,

by the

fillets,

which make a straight

by the

gouges, which
various

make curved
tools,

lines,

and by the
termed.
is

other

as

they are

In
the

the proper cutting and selection of tools


secret of book-decoration.

Mr. Matthews notes


tool-cutters over

the superiority of the


the

French
;

American and
told

British

and

Mr.

Cobdenhe has

Sanderson once

me

of the difficulty

had

in getting cut such tools as

he needed.

Bookbindings Old and New.


Having
determined

05
his

on

the

scheme

of

design, the finisher selects the tools with


to

which
even

execute

it.

Mr.
of

Cobden-Sanderson

makes a habit

using the actual tools in the


pattern, blackening

sketching out of his


in

them
be

the flame of a candle

so that

they can

A BINDING BY COBDEN-SANDERSON.

transferred to paper.
will

Often professional binders

have tools especially prepared for a special

work.

The more accomplished


more elementary

the

workman,

the smaller and

his tools will

be; he will decline to use a spray of leaves or

io6

BookbindiJio-s i>
cut
all

Old and

New
preferring

a festoon
to

in

a single

piece,

impress
is

every leaf separately.

M.

Marius-

Michel

loud in the praises of a finisher

who

worked
intricate

for

Henry

II.,

and who accomplished

and lovely decorations with no other


fillet

implement than a

for

the

straight

lines,

and

a set of o'ouges for the curves


all

and

circles

and these were


ing of
the

that Gilson used in the finish-

most elaborate

Hispano-Moresque

cover and lining of the copy of


"

Owen

Jones's
for

Alhambra," which

Mr.

Matthews
1853,

bound

the

New York

exhibition of

and which

took six months to complete, and cost $500.

The
manner
tifies,

process of working a design in the best


is

very tedious, so Mr. Matthews

tes-

"

more so than even connoisseurs imagdesign


is

ine.

First the

made on

paper, then

impressed with the tools through the paper on


to the leather
;

then the paper

is

removed, and
the tools to

the

design again gone over with


the

make

impression

sharp and clear"

the
tools

leather being slightly moistened

and the
after

being moderately heated.


ing,
sizing,

"

Then,
the

washthe

and

laying on

gold

leaf,

Bookbindings Old and New.


design
is

107

gone over
of the

for the fourth time before


is

one side
ing to

cover

completed.

This, havof

be

repeated
the

on the other side


will

the

volume, and

back also tooled,

afford

some idea

of the

labour in executing the finest

hand-tooling."

Often the inside of the covers

is

also lined

with leather, and as carefully ornamented.


certain figures in the pattern
filled

Often

are excised, and


of

the

spaces

with

leathers

a different
is

colour;

and
as

this

polychromatic
or

decoration

known
isher

inlaying,
to
;

illuminating.

The
taste

fin-

needs
of

have he

delicacy

of

and
to to

nicety

touch

must
and

have
a

fancy

invent

beautiful

desio^ns,

firm

hand

execute
fame,
is

them

and he must not expect wide


appreciation, or high pay.
therefore,
It

much
are
of

real

no

wonder,

that

accomplished
in

finishers

very few.

Mr.

Quaritch,

his
late

catalogue

bookbindings, speaks of the

Francis
lived.

Bedford as the best binder

who

ever
been,

The

best forwarder, he

may have
employ.

but he was not a finisher himself, and he never

had a

first-class

finisher

in

his

Mr.

io8

Bookbindings Old and New.


that
tliere

Matthews asserted
than
six

were not more


can even
In

finishers in

New York "who


if

work any

intricate pattern with fair abiHty.


I

London
in

question
to the

the

number
;

is

greater
Paris,

proportion

population

and

in

where the
age
is

art flourishes most,

where the patron-

encourao^ino",

and
I

the

workmen
if

have

superior

advantages,

doubt

the

number
designs

of finishers quaHfied

to

work

intricate

in first-ckiss

manner exceeds twenty."


Bookbindings, 1860in the last

Any
18S0,

one who was fortunate enougli to see

the Exhibition of
at

Recent

the

GroHer Ckib
will

days of

1890, or

who

take the trouble to turn the

pages

of

M. Octave

Uzanne's

"

La

Reliure

Moderne," must confess that there are very few


finishers
of

our time

who have

originality

of

invention, freshness of composition, or individuality of taste.

But a comparison
of this

of

the

best

bound books

century with those of the

seventeenth and sixteenth centuries


the golden ages of bibliopegy, for
lived
in
"

which are
Le Gascon
"

one,

and Grolier

in

the other
is

will

show

that the

work

of our

time

technically

tJ-77

%,!

^:/

^)

-^

) ^^ d

'it

.^

:>jl

-^y^/^/;

<f7';-^:7

.^;/'

^'7

.>-

^7 ^f

#rJ''

^'J^

-^f

'?:/

J7

:4
"

4 S 4 4 4
Garnet morocco.

4^'

^
B,

AUCASSIN

Bound by Ruban.

AND NICOLETE." LONDON, 1886. Owned by Mr. George


109

De

Forest.

Bookbindings Old and New.


far

1 1

better than

any which has come clown


Tliere
is

to

us from our ancestors.


ins:

better forward-

^ncl

better

finishino:.

In

the
is

sold-toohno-

especially the

modern workman
more
:

incomparably

neater, cleaner,

exact,

more conscientious,
tooling
of the

than

his predecessor

the
is

men

who bound
careless
;

for Grolier

to

our eye inexcusably

clumsy

irregularities

mar

the

symme-

try of the

most beautifully designed arabesques,


and ends

ill-balanced lines overrun their limits,

are

left

hanging out with reckless slovenliness.


of the of

The

superiority

elder

binders

in

their

incomparable
blind us
ness,
to
in

fertility

conception

must not

the fact that in

care, in thorough-

and

other workman-like qualities, they


inferiority to

bear a

most obvious

binders of

later years

who have

not a tithe of their ability.


affairs exists

Probably the same state of


other
arts.
I

in
I

remember
I

that

in
in

1867,

when

was but a boy,

had a chat

Naples with

Signor Castellani, the antiquary and goldsmith


about the fluctuations of the art of the
smith.
silver-

He

told

me

that he

had more than one


than

workman then

in his

shop

of greater skill

1 1

Bookbindings Old and New.


Cellini, of a

Benvenuto

more

certain handicraft.
of Cellini's

These workmen could reproduce any


legacies to posterity,
little

masterpieces of gold-

smithery and enamelling, and they would


a better

make
;

job of

it

than

the great Italian

for

the

modern

imitations would

show

a finer tech-

nical skill than Cellini's,

and reveal fewer defects

and blunders and accidents than the marvellous


originals.

But copy

as accurately as they might,


of

the

modern workmen were wholly incapable


anything.
In
Cellini

originating

there

was a
artist

union of the head and the hand, of the

and
the
lost

of

the

artisan,

while

in

Castellani's

men

hand had gained


its

skill,

but the head had

force.
art

The

handicraft

had improved,

and the

had declined.

There were now


no
indis-

very expert artisans, but there was

putably gifted

artist.

In solidity of

workmanship and

in

dexterity

of handicraft, the art of the

binder has advanced

in this centurv

but not in desisfn.

The

finish-

ers

of our time
past,

can repeat

all

the great artists

of the

but they cannot rival them in in-

vention, in fantasv, in freshness, and in charm.

"3

Bookbindings Old and New.

To
its

say this

is

not to assert that the art


it is

is

in

decadence, or even that


;

in

any way going

backward
mio^ht

but that
to
its

it

is

not going forward one

venture

hint.
last

The
its

nineteenth
it

cen-

tury

is

now

in

decade, and

has not

yet developed a style of

own

in

bookbinding
arts.
II.

"

if

it

has in any other of the decorative


for Grolier
;

The men who bound


lived in

and Henry
the
;

the
"

sixteenth century

Eves and

Le Gascon
the

lived in the seventeenth

and even

in

eighteenth century

there

was Derome,

with his lacework borders borrowed from, or at


least inspired by, the graceful

wrought-iron work

of

the contemporary

French smiths.
of the

But the

most beautiful bindings

nineteenth cen-

tury are in the main imitations of those of the


centuries preceding.
ful

Often the style

is

a doubt-

and
be

tasteless

eclectic,

perhaps not unfairly

to

stigmatized
is

as

bastard

and

mongrel.

There
effort

hardly to be detected even a vague

after

style.

Sometimes imitation
and
a

deis

velops

into

adaptation,

new

style

evolved slowly out of combinations and modifications; but in the art of binding

we have not

1 1

Bookbindings Old and New.

seen
on.

many

signs of any such process

now going

Almost the only external influence which

has been allowed to affect the accepted formulas


is

the Japanese; and the example of these sur-

passingly adroit decorative artists has not been


sufficient

to

destroy

the
is

sterility

from which
Its

the art of bookbinding


at most,

suffering.

effect,

has

been to increase the freedom


to

of

drawing, and

encourage

more

realistic

treatment of natural objects.

The

art

of

bookbinding

has

always

been

claimed by the French as peculiarly


it

theirs,

and

is

not easy to deny the justice of the demand.


in

Perhaps the position


itself

which the
this

art

has found
is

during the most of

century

due to

the French Revolution, in the course of which,

and
for

of the

long wars that ensued, the demand


abruptly.

fine

work ceased
died
tools
off,

The

trained

workmen
and the
the

the

shops were broken up,


lost.

were scattered and


art

Even
in

traditions of the
is

disappeared

and

every art which


represent
the

also a trade the traditions


force,

acquired

the
the

impetus.
Consulate,

When

the

Empire came

after

Bookbindings Old and New.


and Napoleon wished
to

pose as the patron of


" I

the arts, bookbinding was dead in France.

doubt
than

if

you

could

find

anything more ugly


for

the

books

bound
Louis

Napoleon

I.,

for

Louis
clared
"

XVIII,, for

Philippe,"

once de-

M. Auguste Laugel,

in a letter to the

Nation."

As

it

happened, the

art

which

had

been
lowest,
at
its

highest in

France, and had then sunk


its

had kept
the

humble
last

level

in

England, and

end

of the

century had even had

only successful effort at originality there.


greatest

The

name
is

in

the history of bookbinding in

Great Britain

that of

Roger Payne, an honest


of

and thorouoh workman


a
"

some

taste,

and with
design.

certain

elementary

appreciation
original,

of

His

efforts

were always

never copied,"

and

this is a

very rare compliment to pay to a


it

British
as

bookbinder; and

is

to this originality, to

Mr. Matthews suggests, rather than


excellence
in

any

great

his

designs,

that
is

he owes
held in
to

the exaggerated esteem in which he

England.

When Matthew
that

Arnold once said

Sainte-Beuve

he did not think Lamartine

1 1

Bookbindings Old and New.


important
as

very

poet,

the

French

critic
it

replied,

"He
If

is

important to us"; and so

is

with

Roger
he

Payne
is

he

is

important
at
all

to

the

British.

mentioned
is

in

French

books, his

name

usually given incorrectly.

Lewis was the leading English binder early


in this
it

century,

in

Dr. Dibdin's day.

Perhaps

was owing

to the influence of Dibdin,

some
into

of

whose rhapsodical writing was translated

French, that the Parisian book-lovers began to

send their precious volumes across the Channel


to of

be

bound

in

London.

Thus

the

tradition

Roger Payne, the most


had ever had, helped

original

binder the

British

to revive the tradi-

tions of the

French binders, who soon surpassed


rivals,

again their British

just as

it

was a

fol-

lower of Bewick
the
in
possibilities

who
of the

revealed
art

to

the

French

of

wood-engraving,

which the French have also become superior


British.

to the

II.

THE BINDERS OF TO-DAY.

Whether
from Great

the

vivifying spark

was borrowed
it

Britain, or

whether

was brought

from Germany by

Traiitz, the

French binders
Trautz
the
his
in

soon recovered their former supremacy.


is

still

the

strongest

individuality
of
this

among
and

French bookbinders
influence
1879.
is
still

century,

perceptible,

though he died

He

is

the foremost binder of

the nineper-

teenth century, and in his influence

we can

haps detect the foundation of a school, or at


least of
solitary,

something more than merely individual,


unaided struggle toward the unknown.
forwarder
of

At once
every

and
his

finisher,

overseeing
the

operation

craft,

Trautz led

reform of bookbindino^ in France.

He

frowned

upon

all

haste and on

all

labour-saving devices.

He He

never stinted time or care or hard work.


did
his

best always.
119

He

gave to the

vol-

120

Bookbindings Old and New.


which
left

umes

his

hands greater firmness,


than

flexibility,

and

solidity

any other binder

had ever before attempted.


of
"

He

caused a host

new

tools
"

to

be cut, modelled on those of

Le Gascon

and Derome and Padeloup.


of these

He

studied

the works

masters

reverently

and unceasingly, seeking


of

to

spy out the secrets


in

their

art.

He

followed

their

footsteps,

but although

he modelled himself upon them,

he never copied, trying rather to imbue himself


with
their
spirit,

and

to

carry forward

their

methods
" I

to a finer perfection,

do not think that Trautz ever made the


;

same binding twice

there

is

on every book

coming out
something
"

of

his

hands something personal,

original,"

M. Laugel wrote

in

1S79.

This man, who could make any amount of


his

money by merely putting


is

name on

books,

so conscientious that he only turns out every


;

year about two hundred volumes


three

he has only he does the

workmen
of

or

workwomen

drawing
those

ornaments and gilding himself.

For

who have

not seen Trautz or Thibaron


it

(the pupil of Trautz) at work,

is

almost impos-

Bookbindings Old and New.


sible to

imagine how

much

pains must be taken

for

one volume."

Nothing that Trautz under;

took cost more pains than his mosaics

in

the

two-score years from 1838 to 1878 he attempted

only twenty-two of them, and of these four are

now owned by New York


his bindings,

collectors.

They

show, perhaps, the most originality of any of

and they reveal

his characteristics

most abundantly.
of design

They have

the pure beauty

which we look
art,

for in

every work of
deft-

decorative

wrought with the utmost

ness and delicacy of handicraft.

Of the supremacy
of

of the

French

in

the

art

bookbinding since Trautz led them back into

the true path,

no better evidence can there be

than the index of binders represented prefixed


to the catalogue of the Grolier
of

Club Exhibition
is

Recent Bookbindings.

New York

perhaps

the

most cosmopolitan

of all the great cities of


all

the nineteenth century, especially in

matters

pertaining to art; and the taste of


is

its

collectors

eclectic in the best sense of that

much-abused
handi-

term.

Of the

fifty-one
at

binders
the

whose

work was exhibited

Grolier,

thirty-six

22
in

Bookbindmgs Old and New.


Paris,

lived
six

one

at

Lyons, one at Brussels,

in

London,

five in

New

York, one in Phila-

delphia, and one in Quebec.


riority

The

artistic

supethe

of the

French

bindings shown

at

Grolier was almost as


of

marked

as the numerical
in at

the
in

score

of

bindings

finest

conception
least

and
the

execution,
of

three-fourths

were

product
not
a

Parisian

workshops.

There
from

were
these

few also which

had come
as

same shops, which were

bad as the

worst which had been turned out in


or

New York
of

London
borrow

misbegotten
a
scriptural

horrors
if

leather,

"whom
to

Satan hath bound,"

it

is

permissible

quotation
late

from

that
of

learned book-lover,

the

Henry Stevens

Vermont.

But

the

very

best

of

M M.

Cape,

Cuzin,

Chambolle-Duru,

De

Samblancx,

Gruel

and
Nied-

Engelmann,
ree,

Joly,

Lortic,

Marius-Michel,
attains

Quinet,
of

and

Ruban,

very high
again,

standard
doubt,
rificed

excellence.

Now
finishing,

and

no
sac-

we

find a

French binder who has


to

forwarding
solid

having
that

made
it

his

book so

and

so

stiff

can

A BINDING BY FRANCISQUE
123

CUZIN.

Bookbindings Old and New.


scarcely be opened, and so
is

25
it

compacted that
is

if

opened unwarily the back

broken beyond

repair.

Books
Parisian

have seen fresh from the hands


as
brilliant

of

binder
to

as

jewel-

casket,

and as hard

open as a safe-deposit vault


the combination.
position

when you have forgotten

The
and

relatively

high

held

by

the
only,

binders of
at best

Great
it

Britain
to

was momentary

was due

the temporary deca-

dence
least,

of the craft in France.

Of

late years, at

bookbinding has shared the misfortune


of

of

most

the

other

fine

arts

in

England, and
lament-

has lingered

in a condition

only less

able than that of sculpture


it

and painting because


with dull and

contented

itself chiefly

honest

imitation of the dead-and-gone masters.


artist

Every
and

must needs serve

his apprenticeship

follow in the footsteps of

a teacher, but where


inspiration
only,

Trautz,

for

example, sought

Bedford and the other

British

binders

found

models which they copied slavishly.

The worktheir

manship

of

the bindings

that

left

shops

was honest and thorough, but the decoration

was

lifeless

and colourless.

The

British artisan

26

Bookbindings Old and New.

forwarded conscientiously, but the finishing of


the British artist was sadly to seek.

How

inert

the

art

of

bookbinding was

in

England during nearly

four-score years can


"

be
Fif-

seen by glancing over the


teen

Catalogue of
for

Hundred

Books
of

remarkable
their

the

Beauty or the Age

Bindings" issued

by Mr.

Quaritch in

1888.

Here the curious


1

inquirer will find, under

numbers
by

325-1 345, a
Bedford,
the

score

of

books

bound

Francis
to

whom
binder
doubt,
these

Mr.

Quaritch

declares

be

best

who
the

ever lived
best
is

meaning
and
in

thereby, no
of

forwarder;
finished

every one
of

books

imitation

some

French binder.
in imitation of

Nos. 1325 and 1326 are "bound

Derome
in

le

jeune," the catalogue

declares
of

frankly,

apparent

unconsciousness
to

the

hopelessly

inartistic

position
British

which

this

confession
is

assigns

the

craftsman.

No. 1327
1328
is

"in

imitation of
in

Padeloup."
of

No.
of

"bound

imitation

the

work
of

Hardy-Dumennil," a French binder not


highest esteem
^l3^-> ^ZZ^-i
'^^cl

the

among

book-lovers.

Nos. 1329,
Trautz.

1339 are copied from

Bookbindings Old and New.

127

Nos. 1334, 1335, and 1345 are "bound in imitation of

Chambolle-Duru."
artistic

This

sterility

was probably due

to

XSSOESBBSPi

ilx*.'.-.-:

"

THE STORY OF SIGURD THE VOLSUNG AND THE FALL OF THE NIBLUNGS." Size, 7% in. X sJ^ in. Bound by Cobden-Sanderson.

the lack of intelligent patronage, and the slug-

gishness
this

of

the

book-lover

is

responsible

for

disheartening result.

But the custom seems

28

Bookbmdings Old and New.


even
in

to obtain

the present
the

day,

if

one may

accept as

evidence
"

second edition of Mr.


of

Zaehnsdorf s

The Art

Bookbindinor."

In

"ATALANTA
Size, ^Vi in.

IN CALYDOX."

dVt in.

Bound by Cobdeu-Sanderson.

this

practical

guide

to

his

art,

the author, a

bookbinder himself and the son

of a

bookbinder,

gives plates of typiceJ covers of the chief styles;

Bookbindings Old and New.

129

and these are not genuine specimens bound for


Grolier or by
ently
"

Le Gascon."
Gascon

They
" {sic)

are appar;

Mr.

Zaehnsdorf's

own handiwork

cer-

tainly the plate called "

cannot be

the

work
is

of the great

Frenchman, because the

book

one

first

published perhaps two hun-

dred years after his death.

Here we discover a

conscientious craftsman not only content to be


a

humble

imitator,
of

but

so

deficient

in

any
no

appreciation
difference

originality

that
of

he
his

sees

between

the

model
copy.

master

and

his

own second-hand
yet

And
dignity

Francis

Bedford

was

capable

of

original work, simple


of
its

always, but with a quiet

own.

Mr.

Zaehnsdorf

is

an

accomplished workman, able to send from his

shop

books

dressed

with

propriety,

and,

at

times, not without individuality.

Mr. Roger de

Coverly
are

is

another British binder whose labours


book-lovers.

liked by

The

most

original

figure

among
in
fact,

the

English binders of this cenonly


original

tury

the
is

figure

since

Roger Payne
Mr.

Mr. Cobden-Sanderson.
is

Cobden-Sanderson

one

of

the

most

130

Bookbindings Old and New.

characteristic personalities in the strange strug-

gle for artistic freedom

now going on

in

Eng-

"

HOMERI

ILIAS."

Size, 514 in.

x 3%

in.

Bound by Cobden-Sanderson.

land.

He

is

a friend and fellow-labourer of Mr.


of

William Morris and

Mr. Walter Crane with


is

whose

socialistic

propaganda he

in

sympa-

Bookbindings Old and New.


thy,

131

and with
takes

whom
the

he manifests and parades.

He

much

same view

of Hfe that they

SHKLLF.V.
Size, ZVi in.

"THK

Kl'A'Ol.r

)1'

ISLAM.

5V4 in.

Bound by Cobden-Sanderson.

have; he holds the

same creed

as
it
;

to

society,

and as to each man's duty toward

he has the

132

Bookbindings Old and New.


in
art
;

same aim
httle
of

and he

is

gifted with not a


instinct.

the

same decorative

Believ-

ing in handicraft as the salvation of humanity,

and that a man should labour with

his

hands,

he abandoned the bar, and studied the trade of


the binder.

Perhaps

it

is

hardly unfair to

call

him an amateur
teur

so
at

Mr. Hunt was an amathose

when he

desio:ned

most beautiful
IMr.

wrought-iron

gates

Newport.

Cobden-

Sanderson's forwarding has not yet attained to


the
are

highest professional

standard.

But
believe

there

not

lacking book-lovers

who

him

to be the

most

orio-inal

and the most

effective

finisher

who

has yet appeared in England.


is

His tooling
vigorous.

admirably firm and dazzlingly


the

Whatever
in

inadequacy

of

his

workmanship
the gilding,

the

processes

which precede

and

in these his

hand

is

steadily

gaining

strength,

there

is

no

disputing his
to

decorative

endowarient.

He brought
alert

the
a

study of
trained

bookbinding an

intelligence,
to

mind, and a determination


of

master
his

the

secrets
beins:

the

art.

He

does

all

own
un-

work,

both forwarder

and

finisher,

"IN MEMORIAM."
Size,

6%

in.

^Vi in.

Bound by Cobden-Sanderson.
133

Bookbindings Old and New.

135

aided even by an apprentice, although his wife


(a

daughter
of

of

Richard
sewing.

Cobden)

has
his for for

taken

charge
tools,

the

He

designs

own
him.

having

them

cut

especially

Even

the letters he uses were

drawn

him

by Miss

May

Morris

and he makes a most


initials,

artful use of lettering,


titles,

working
essential

names,

and mottos into


an
of

his design,

and making
part
of

them

integral

and

the

scheme

decoration.

He
of " of

has

studied

most

lovingly the

methods

Le Gascon," and he
the
"

has

assimilated

some
it

taste

of

that

master of the art;


doubt, that

is

from

Le Gascon," no

Mr. Cobden-Sanderson caught the


of his

knack

of

powdering parts
stars,

design with

gold points,
\

single

leaves,

and the
brilliancy

like

a
Mr.
order.

device
if

giving

the

utmost

to

the design

used

skilfully.

Cobden-Sanderson

will

not

work

to

He
and

binds only those books that please

him,
is

he

binds
of

them
the

as

he pleases.
of

He
cusvol-

independent

caprices

his

tomers.
[

He
and

does
with

not

undertake
he
does

many
his

umes,

each

best.

136

Bookbindings Old and New.


a
novice, trying his
'prentice

When

hand, he

wasted himself

more

than

once

on volumes

"THE LIFE AND DEATH OF

JASON.

Bound bv Cobden-Sanderson.

of

no

great

value, a

and
not

put

fifty

dollar
pe-

binding

on

book
an

worth

five

cuniary solecism,

artistic

incongruity.

Of

Bookbindings Old and Nezv.


late

137
blunder,
of

he

has

not
to

fallen

into

this

and he prefers

spend himself on books


the
original
edition.
;

permanent value
course
of his

in

Of

he

never

repeats
is

himself
as

every one
a
picture
is

bindings
are

as

unique

there

no

replicas.

Every cover
itself,

comthe

posed for the volume

and

is

often

outcome
decorative

of

loving

study of

the

author,

scheme

having been suggested by

some representative passage.


But
he
;

never
as

confounds

decoration
in

with

illustration

he explained
is

an
of

article

on

his

art,

"

beauty

the
or

aim
the
find

decoration,
of

and

not

illustration,

expression

ideas."

So we
the

do

not

on

his

books
has

any
been

of

childish

symbolism
in

which

abundantly advocated
a

England, on

and

according to which

treatise

zoology or

botany must
a

be
bald

adorned with

an animal or
of

flower

and babyish labelling


to

book

wholly unrelated

propriety

of

orna-

mentation.
generally

Mr. Cobden-Sanderson's covers are


rich

with

conventionalized
precision.

flowers

arrayed with

geometrical

He

falls

138
into a

Bookbindings Old and New.


naturalistic

treatment only at rare


In a copy of
for

and

regrettable
ris's

moments.

Mr. Mor-

"

Hopes and Fears

Art,"

which
design

Mr.
has

Cobden-Sanderson

has bound, the

a careful freedom of composition and an artful

symmetry; the treatment


which form the border
ventional,
is

of

the

rose-branches

almost purely con-

and the broad

blank space

in

the

centre

is

restfully open.
is

In America the art of the binder

retarded
the high

by reasons

really outside

of

art

by

wages
tariff

of

skilled

workmen, and by the

high

on raw materials, which have so raised


of

the

cost

the
in

best

bookbinding that many


have been wont to

book-lovers

New York
to

send their precious


across

tomes on a long voyage


be

the

Atlantic,

bound

in

London
the
the
best
cata-

or

Paris.

Americans
of

were

among

customers
logue
of

Francis
Grolier

Bedford, and

the

Club exhibition proves

that they have been persistent purchasers of the

best

work
to

of

contemporary French

binders.
is

But

send books abroad to be

bound
of

no
the

way

to

encourage

the

development

A UINDING BY COliUEN-SANDERSON.

NEW TESTAMENT.
Bound by William Matthews,
and red morocco.
in light

brown crushed levant, inlaid with blue By permission of Mr. Matthews.


141

Bookbindings Old and New.


art at

43

home.

This same

Groher Chib

exhibi-

tion

showed that American craftsmen were cap-

able of turning out

work

of

very high rank.

The

best of

the books

bound by Mr. William


Matthews, by
Brad-

Matthews, by
streets,

Mr. Alfred

by Mr. Smith, and by Mr. Stikeman,

held their
ficulties

own

fairly well.

Considering the
art has

dif-

under which the


the showing

developed in
the

this country,

made by
William

Amer-

ican binders was the most creditable.

For a binding
"
is

like

Mr.

Matthew's

Knickerbocker's History of

New
;

York," there
is

no need

to

make any apology

it

excellent
style,

in

conception and in execution, pure in

modestly original, and most harmoniously decorative,


its

with

its

appropriate ship,

its

tiny tulips,

and

wreaths of willow.

The

inventor of

these
of

designs for the inside

and the outside


J.

the

Knickerbocker was Mr. Louis


Mr. Matthews had called

Rhead,

whom

to his aid.

Although both Mr. Matthews and Mr. Rhead


are

Englishmen by

birth,

think

can

feel

an
this
evi-

American influence

in
I

the

decoration
right, this

of
is

American book.

If

am

144

Bookbindings Old and New.

dence, were any needed, of the great advantage


tlicre
is

in

having a book bound by a counthe


autlior,

tryman

of

who

will

treat

it
I

with

unconscious propriety of decoration.


a
it

know
in

wise
a rule

collector
to

in

New York who makes


bound
in

have his French books bound

Paris,

his

English books

London,
in

and

his

American books

bound here

New

York.
" Fifty years ago," said in

Mr. William Matthews

his

interestinor

address

on

his

art,

" there

was not a

finely

bound book, except what by

chance had been procured abroad, to be found


in

anv

collection

in
art."

America.

Fine
in

binding^
last

was an unknown

Now

the

de-

cade of the nineteenth century, Mr. Matthews


thinks " there are

many examples

of

American

workmanship
honour

in

our collections that would do

to the best

French and Enfylish binders O


If

of

the last half-centur}'."

this is true,

much

of
is

the credit for the improvement of public taste

due

to the influence of ^Ir.

Matthews

himself.

Of modern
is

Italian

and German binding there


to

no necessity or space

say anything

here.

IRVING'S "KNICKERBOCKER'S HISTORY OF

NEW YORK.

Bound by William Matthews.


Club, 1888.

Owned

by the Grolier by Mr. William Matthews.


Publislierl

145

Bookbindings Old and New.

147

The

tradition of vellum binding has been kept

alive in

Rome and

in

Florence, where the bevelinlaid

edged white tomes are often relieved by an


rectangle of coloured
calf,

tooled with what might

perhaps be called
pattern.

fairly

enough a Neo-Aldine
the Grolier

The

exhibition of
in the

Club,

which has aided

preparation and in the

illustration of these pages, included

no

Italian

work,

and

this

is

evidence

that

our collecit

tors, rightly

or wrongly, do not hold

in

high

esteem.

Nor was
handiwork.

there a single specimen of Teutonic

Yet Trautz was a German by


in

birth,

and

earlier

this

century there were several


established
in

German
Walther,

binders

England

Kalthoeber,

Staggemeier.

Even

now, while one of the leading binders of London, Mr. Riviere,


is
is

of of

French descent, another,

Mr. Zaehnsdorf,

German,

In

New York
Gerof

many
mans.

of

the journeyman

bookbinders are

Not only

was the
at

bibliopegic art
this

Germany unrepresented
bition in

recent

exhi-

New

York, but in none of the


about binding, French,

many

recent

books

English,

148
and

Bookbindings Old and New.


American, do
I

find

any

attention

paid

to the

work
ago

of

the

modern Germans.
of

Several

years

M.
half

Rouveyre
a

Paris,

who had
binding,

pubHshed

dozen

books about

arranged for a French edition of a collection of O

German bindings
(Reliure,
Fifty copies

and

of "

La Dorure
en

sur Cuir

Ciselure,

Gaufrure)

Allemagne."

were issued, the same publisher hav-

ing risked fifteen hundred copies of M. Octave

Uzanne's

"

La

Reliure

Moderne."
in
this

From
it

the
is

well-made reproductions
fair to infer that the
is

volume,

German binding
It is
it

of to-day

not remarkably interesting.

sometimes
frequently

dull

and sometimes pretentious;

is

designed by architects
in the needs

who

are without training


;

and

possibilities of its technic


;

it

is

often violently polychromatic


set
off

and
of

it is

sometimes

by elaborate panels

inserted enamel,

and by
of

richly chiselled corners

and centrepieces
employis

silver.

What
vigorous

is

best

is

the artful

ment

of

blind-tooling;

and what

most noteworthy

is

the successful revival of the

mediaeval art of carving in leather, always best

understood by the Germans.

INSIDE COVER OF PRECEDING.


149

III.

THE OUTLOOK FOR THE FUTURE.

Much
Teutonic

as

one might expect a precious metal


is

to enrich a tome, there

more than a hint


of

of

heaviness

in

most

these

carved-

leather covers, girt with soHd silver clasps, and

armed with chased medallions.

The

occasional

attempts of American silversmiths at book-decoration are lighter and

more

graceful.

have

seen

more than one prayer-book, the smooth


of

dark calfskin

which was shielded by a thin


delicate arabesques.

shell of silver pierced with

But

this

is

almost an

accidental

return
its

to

method
ness,

of

ornamentation long past

useful-

and appropriate only when every book was

a portly

tome bound

in

real boards,
its

and repos-

ing in solitary glory on

own

lectern.
in

The
alli-

future of bookbinding does not

lie

any

ance with silversmithery.


Just

where the future


151

of

bookbinding docs

152
He
is

Bookbindings Old and Neiu.


very
difficult
is

to

declare.

Cosmopolitan
of

commonplace
the

the characteristic

much

of

work

of

to-day.

Craftsmen
content

of

remarkable
convention-

technical
ality

skill

are

with

and they go on indefinitely repeating the


Grolier,

old styles,

Maioli and Derome, which


styles

Padeloup and
alive,

were

once
of

but

which have long since been void


of vitality.

any germ
is

To

persist

in

using them
but

like

refusing

to

speak
alive
is

any

language
living

Latin.

For a man
ever impure,

to-day a

dialect,

how-

better than a lifeless

language,

however
of

perfect.

There are not wanting signs


the
banality of

reaction

against

modern

bookbinding.

One
the

of

them

is

the

instant

success

of

Mr.
is

Cobden-Sanderson's
return
to

innovations.

Another

silver-mounting.
infertile,
is

Yet a

third,

curious only, and

the decoration

of

a book-cover with enamels, either incrusted


applied.

or

The Germans have taken


metal,

to

letting

monogram, ornamented or
;

into

the
to

centre of a book-cover

but nothing seems


a

be gained by this which

mosaic

of

leather

Bookbindings Old and New.


would
not

153
Philippe

have

given.

The
French

late

Burty, the distinguished

art-critic,

and
nov-

a book-lover with
elty,

the

keenest

likinsf

for

had a copy on

Dutch
"

paper
"
;

of

Poulet-

Malassis's essay
it

on

Ex-Libris

he enriched
he
in-

with

other

interesting

book-plates;
;

serted a few autograph letters

he had

it

bound
monothe

by R,

Petit

in

full
;

morocco, with his

gram

at the corners

and

in the centre of

side he let in a metal plate

on which

his

own

book-plate was enamelled in niello.


larly personal

This singuin

binding

is

reproduced
"

M. Oc-

tave Uzanne's

volume on

La

Reliure Moderne,"
Burty's
experi"

where we

find

another of M.

ments, a copy of
la

M. Claudius Popelin's
la

De

Statue et de

Peinture

" (translated

from
identi-

Alberti), also
fied

bound by
owner's

Petit,

and also

by the

monogram, and
side,

having,

moreover, in the centre of the


elled

an enamfor

panel

made by M. Popelin
copy
of his

himself

his friend's

own

book.

Burty had

in his collections other


;

volumes
in

dis-

tinguished by enamels

and there were

the

Grolier Club exhibition a set of books belonging

154
to

Bookbindings Old and New.

Mr. S. P. Avery, and quite as

much

out of

the

common

as

Burty's.
of

Mr. Avery has sent

certain volumes

the

"

BibHotheque de I'En"

seignement

des

Beaux-arts

to

the

authors,

asking each to indicate the

binding which he
with
his

thought

most

consonant
"

work; so

Mr. Avery has

La

Faience," of

M. Theodore
one
of

Deck, decorated with panels

of pottery,

them being a
at his
"

portrait

of

the

author executed
Sauzy's
con-

own ceramic works; and he has


of

Marvels

Glass-Making," with covers


panels

taining

glass

enamelled

in

colours.

These ventures belong among the


of the art
;

curiosities

they are to be classed

among

the

freaks

rather

than

with

the

professional

beauties.

Another book
Mr. Avery)
interest
artistic.

of

Burty's

(now

owned

by

has

an

exceptional
literary
of

interest

an

perhaps
It
is

rather

than

rigidly

copy

the

original
"

edition

of
le

Victor Hugo's
Petit,"

scorching
in

satire,

Napoleon

published

1853,

few

months

after

Napoleon had broken

his oath

and made

himself emperor; this

copy (made doubly pre-

Bookbindings Old aiid New.

155

cious by three lines in the poet's handwriting)

was bound
side

in

dark

green
to

morocco,
receive an

and

the

was hollowed out

embroid-

"

LES CHATIMENTS."

Bound by

Petit.

Green morocco.

VICTOR HUGO, 1853. The " Bee " from the

throne of NapoP.

leon ni., Tuileries, September, 1870.

Owned by Mr. Samuel

Avery.

ered

bee

a
after

bee

which had

been

cut

from

the throne of Napoleon III. in the Tuileries a

few days
the

the
of

battle

of

Sedan.

This

is

very

irony

bookbinding.

copy

of

156
"

Bookbindings Old and New.


Chatiments
"

Les

was

bound

to

match.

Future collectors

will

find these bees of

Burty

even harder to acquire than those which mark


the books of

De Thou.
not
to

Unusual,

say

unique,
is

as

such
a

an
for

opportunity must be, there


the

here
to

hint

book-lover
at least
is

not

by him

be

despised.

Here

an exceptional binding.

Here
of

at least

we

leave the

monotonous
is

iteration

the cut-and-dried.
lishing a
relation
its

Here

method

of estabof

between the subject


not
ten
hitherto

the

book and

exterior
of

attempted.

For nine books out


binding
the
suffices,

the

conventional
levant
for
for

Jansenist

crushed
half

costly

volumes,

simple

morocco

those less valuable.


ures,

But for the special


with

treasof

for

the

books

an

individuality

their

own,

why may we

not abandon this barof

ren impersonality and seek to get out


regular rut
?

the

M.

Octave
to

Uzanne

has

avowed
"

that

he

would prefer
des Siecles
"

have a copy of the

Legende
the

clad soberly in a fragment of

dark-green uniform which

Hugo wore

the day he

Bookbindings Old mid New.


was received into the French Academy,

157
to the

same volume bound with


by the best binder

the

utmost

luxury
it

of the time.
little

Perhaps

is

carrying this fancy a

too far to bind the

Last Dying Speech and Confession of a murderer in


a
strip
of

his

own

hide
"

properly

tanned, or even to cover

Holbein's

Dance
;

of
I

Death

"

with a like ghastly integument


I

but

confess

should find a particular pleasure in


the
of

owning
"

copy

of

Washington

Irving's

Conquest

Grenada," which
" in

Mr. Roger de

Coverly

bound

Spanish

morocco

from

Valencia" for the Arts and Crafts Exhibition


in

London
In
his
in

in
"

1S89.

Caprices

d'un

Bibliophile,"

pub-

lished

1878,
to

M.

Octave
a

Uzanne

urged
of

book-lovers
leathers.

seek out

greater

variety

The French
"

are
that

not

afBicted

with

what Dickens called


cover which
is

underdone pie-crust

technically

known

as
;

law-calf,"

and which
they ever
dull

is

desolately
either
as

monotonous
for

nor have
calf,

cared

sprinkled

as

and decorous
calf,"

orthodoxy, or for
affected

" tree-

marbled

much

by the

British.

i5<S

Bookbindings Old and New.


French do not take
to
tree-calf
is

That the

proof at once of their taste and of their wisdom.

Mr.

Matthews

declares

that

he

does

not

recommend
speaks
acids
as
of

tree-calf,

and
of

M.

Marius-Michel
it it

the

process

marbling

with
rots

"a diabolic invention," since

the the

leather

as
to

every

one

knows

who

has

misfortune

own

books

bound

in this

fashion half a century ago.

The French, with


bookattention

a full understanding of the principles of

binding,

have confined their


calf

almost

wholly to

and

to

morocco, eschewing even


Russia-leather, which
be-

the pleasant-smelling

comes
unless

brittle,
it

and has
constantly
oil

tendency to

crack,
it

is

handled,

whereby
finders.

absorbs animal
In
calf

from the human


of

the

employment

other

leathers

than

and morocco
lead.

we Americans have taken


bound
in
alligator,

the

Books

and

in

sealskin, for
of

example, are to be found in any

the leading bookstores, not always appropriclad,


I

ately

regret

to

remark.

There

is

hideous
the

incongruity, for
of

instance, in sheathing
in alligator-hide,
fit

wisdom

Emerson

as

"
;

Bookbindings Old and New.


this

159
weird

scaly

substance

might

be
is

for

the

tales of Poe.

Equally horrible
snakeskins
;

a prayer-book

covered with
bibliopegic

and
been

both
offered

of to

these

freaks

have

me
that
fitly

by tradesmen more enterprising than


Gautier's
"

artistic.

Une

Nuit

de

Cleopatre,"

strange tale of the serpent of old Nile, might

be protected by the skin of the crocodile

and

Captain Bourke's book about the


of the

"

Snake-Dance
to call for

Moquis

of

Arizona" seems

an
a

ophidian integument.

So might we
to

clothe
in

volume describing a voyage


skin, or

Alaska

seal-

an account
It

of Australia in the hide

of

the

kangaroo.

w^ould
"

be

quaint

fancy

to put our old favourite


in

Rab and

his Friends

dogskin (easily to be had from the glovers)

and our

new

friend

"

Uncle

Remus,"

in
"

the

soft coat of

Brer Rabbit.

Champfleury's

Les

Chats," and

M. Anatole France's old-fashioned


"

and

cheerful

Crime

de

Sylvestre

Bonnard

could be bound in catskin.


In

more than one


is

of

the

old
of

treatises

on

bookbinding
admirer of

mention

made

an

ardent

Charles

James Fox, who had the

60

Bookbindings Old and New.


his
idol

speeches of
liide

covered with
serve
better,
it

vulpine
to

which
in the

would

seems

me, as a coat for a volume of hunting reminiscences.

So might

the

life

of

Daniel Boone be
" like
life

bound
the

skin of a " b'ar


" cilled "
;

that which
of

pioneer

and
in

the

Davyof

Crockett
coon,

could

be

clad
of

the

skin

the

descendant
to

the fabled

quadruped
dis-

which volunteered

come down when he


"

covered that the backwoodsman had drawn a

bead on him.

Dana's

Two

Years before the


if

Mast

"

would look well

in whale-skin, or,

that

were too tough,


"

in shark-skin

shagreen.
and
for

The
use of

Peau d'ane
hide
of
in

" of Perrault

suggests the

the

the

animal
lion's
"

who once
;

disguised

himself
tion
of

the

skm

any

edi-

^sop's

Fables,"

an indefinite numlies

ber of appropriate leathers

ready to one's

hand.
In 1890 Messrs. Tiffany

&

Co. issued a cat-

alogue of more than a hundred different kinds


of leather then

on exhibition
for

in their store

on

Union Square, and ready


ing of pocket-books,

use in the makcard-cases,

bags, blotters,

Bookbindings Old and New.


and the
the
like
;

i6i
for

and
of

all

these
if

are

available

binding

books,

the

book-lover will

take the trouble to select and to seek for the


leather best suited
to

each
of

tome
Messrs.

in

its

turn.

A
Co.

glance over the


is

list

Tiffany

&

most suggestive.
for

The how

skin of the chaaptly


this

meleon,

example,

would

bedeck the orations


ticians
!

of certain professional poli-

How

well

the

porcupine would suit

the later writings of Mr.

Ruskin

How

fitly

the black bear would cover the works of

Dr.
as

Johnson,

"

author of

the

contradictionary,"

Hood
book
the

called

him

have already noted one


snake-skin,
better

best

bound

in

but perhaps

uncanny ophidian had

be reserved

for those

books which every gentleman's library

should be without.
the

Yet

should like to see

speeches

of

Vallandigham

bound

in

the

skin of a copperhead.

M. Uzanne
oly
of

also

advocated that the monop-

leather

should be infringed,
in
stuffs,

and that

books be bound
again,

in

velvet

now and
could

and

in

old

brocades.

And what

be more delightfully congenial to Mr. Dobson's

62

Bookbindings Old and New.

"

Vignettes in Rhyme," wherein the poet sings

of the

days when
. .

France's bluest blood

Danced

to the tune of "After us, the

flood!"

what
"

could

be

more

harmonious
than
to

to

his

Proverbs in

Porcelain,"

robe

those

dainty volumes of verse in a remnant of dam-

ask or golden
of

brocade saved from

the

dress

the

Pompadour?
for

apparel
Pierre

the

"

What could be a fitter Madame Crysantheme " of


a

Loti

than

Japanese
of

silk

strangely

embroidered, with a label

Japanese leather

on the back, and with


as

Japanese water-colours

end-papers
In

M. Uzanne's
"

later

volume on

"

La
his

Reli-

ure

Moderne
in

there are photogravures of books

bound

accordance

with

hints
for

of

the
of

cartonnage a la
all

Pompadour

one.

But

those

who were reaching


Philippe

out in

new
art

direc-

tions

with hope of

renewing the
Burty seemed
fertile.

of

the
to

bookbinder,

to

me

have been the most


tives

One
of

of his of

tenta-

was a bold and frequent use


in

his

own

monogram

the

decoration

his

books

Bookbindings Old and New.


especially

163
employor

noteworthy was the


this

skilful

ment

of

monogram

in

the

dentelle,

border of the inside, oftener than not

disfie-

ured in America and in England by a hack-

neyed

"

wheel," blurring brutally at the corners.

In the bindings of
Poitiers

Henry

II.

and Diana

of

we can
a

see the most admirable utiliza-

tion of
is

monogram and

a device

and here
follow

a model

modern book-decorators may


So, too,
of

from afar as best they can.


pierre

Longe-

made
for
in

use of the

emblem

the Golden

Fleece,

which to-day bibliopegic argonauts


vain.

voyage
tools,

In

the

cutting

of

special

monograms,

devices, significant emblems,

masks,
hope
of

lyres, torches, or tears,

each owned
is

by the individual book-owner, there

perhaps
insi-

some

relief

from the stereotyped

pidity of the ordinary binder's stock in trade.


It
is

very

difficult

to

indicate

the

probable
after

line

of

bibliopegic

development.

Only

many

a vain effort and

many

a doubtful strug-

gle do

we

ever attain the goal of our desires.


to

Setting our faces


the

the future,
its

we must

let

dead

past

bury

dead,

and

we must

64

Bookbindings Old and New.


lifeless
is

give up the

imitation of defunct styles.


also,

Greater variety

needed, greater freedom

such as some of the other decorative arts have


achieved of late years.
lover
is

The duty
for the

of the book-

equal to that of the bookbinder;

they
of

must needs work together


the
art.

advance
to

For

their

collaboration

be

pregin

nant the book-lover must educate


the possibilities
tions
of

himself

and

in

the

technical
will

limita-

the

art.

Every architect

confess

that

he has had
his
clients,

many
and
;

a practical suggestion

from

more

often

from
of

the

wives of his clients


book-lover

and the influence


bookbinder
can
be

the

on

the

even

more
In

beneficial.

dealing

with

the the

ordinary
less

uninspired
the
to
better,

workman,

perhaps

said

and the simpler the work entrusted

him the

more

satisfactory

it

is

likely to be.
is

Here, perto

haps, the most that can be done

follow

the fashion and prescribe the


intelligent
afraid
of

style.
art,

With an
and
not

binder,

fond
aside

of

his

step

from the beaten path,

the book-lover can do

much, encouraging

his

Bookbindings Old and New.


ally,

65

lending him boldness, keeping him up to

the mark, sustaining

him

to

do his

best,

show-

ing

him

the

most interesting work that has

been
patron
artist

done

elsewhere.

The

relation

of

the

offensive
is

vocable

to

the

decorative

not unlike that of the

stage-manager
for
;

to

the actor,
to

Samson

to

Rachel,

instance,

M. Sardou

Mme. Sarah-Bernhardt
even
is

he can
he

show what he wants done,


cannot
did,

though

do

it

himself.

This

what Grolier

and De Thou, and M. Burty. and


the

Thus

the

bookbinder
together,

book-lover
interesting

fare

forward

making
art

experiments,

whereby the
most
of the

progresses,
fail.

even

though the

experiments

That the book-lover and the bookbinder can


put their heads together,
latter
it

is

needful that the


fac-

should be an individual and not a

tory.

There must be binderies

for

the
in

comthe
it

mercial

work

(of

which

shall

speak

next chapter), for


called
;

" edition

binding,"

as

is

but

"

extra binding," the covering of a


in

single

volume

accord

with

the

wishes

of

the

owner

of that

one book, can best be done

66

Bookbindings Old and New.


the
artist-artisan
is

where
his

at

Hberty to meet
they
are

customer face to

face,

that

may
little

talk

the matter over.

Most binderies

more

than factories, with


division of labour,

many

machines, and a close


lays out

and a foreman who


hands."
is

the

work

of the

"

This
able

is

not the \vay


delight
it

Mr.
with

Cobden-Sanderson
his

to
is

us

lovely

design,

nor

the

way
as

Trautz carried on his business.

An

artist

independent as Mr. Cobden-Sanderson, and as


rigid
in

his

independence,

is

best

apart;

he

broods in solitude, and

we

profit
at

by his dream.
the

Trautz had three assistants

most

he

was
and

his

own forwarder and


patron

his

own
in

finisher:

the

had

no

difficulty

dealing

directly with the

man who was


this

to

do the work.
vital

Not only

is

friendly
art,

relation

to

the progress of the


is

but the factory system


at

fatal

to

it,

when
is

the capitalist

the

head

of

the bindery
all

willing selfishly to take the


is

credit of

that

done

in

his shop.

For a
of

competent designer, with the proper pride


an
artist,
If

so

suppressed a position

is

intoler-

able.

the forwarding and the finishing of a

Bookbindings Old and New.


book are by
different hands, the
to

167
of

owner

the

book ought

know

it,

and the two men who


that he

cooperate ought to

know
art of
is

knows

it.

Perhaps what the


in

bookbinding
the

is

most
of

need

of

just

now

estabhshment
in

the

individual
of

binder,

an

artisan-artist

shop

his

own with an immediate


maybe
the

assistant

or two, and

a pair of apprentices.

Then
and

the
the

binder will sign

work he
of

does,

work

will
it

bear the

name

the

man who
British
in
is

really did

and no other.

The

superiority of

American wood-engraving over the


due
partly
at
least

to

the

fact
is

that

the

United States the engraver


artist,

one individual
he
is

while

in

Great

Britain

either

shop-keeper or a factory hand.

COMMERCIAL BOOKBINDING.

COMMERCIAL BOOKBINDING.

THE ANTIQUITY OF EDITION BINDING.


In one of the annual volumes of
Paris,"
"

La Vie a
inter-

stout

tomes of cheerful
that

gossip,

mitted
the

now

the

author

is

the director of
of
tells

Theatre

Fran9ais,

and a member
Jules
Claretie

the

French
pleasant

Academy,

M.

anecdote of a contemporary Parisian


to

binder

who was asked


from
his

cover one

of

the

beautiful books

which M. Conquet sends forth


little

spasmodically

shop,

and who
I

drew back with


not

scorn,

declaring,

" Sir,

will

dishonour

myself

by

binding a modern

book."

This craftsman's pride

it

was,

no doubt,

to

clothe the stately Aldine and the


vir
in
fit

pigmy

Elze-

robes

of

crushed morocco, dccorat171

172
ino-

Bookbindings Old and New,


them with
delicate gold traceries tooled bit

by

bit,

and lingered over lovingly.

To him

it

would have been a sad shock, had he been


suddenly
a
that, in the
is

told

eyes of the average reader,


it

book

bound when

is

merely cased
has
it
is.

in a

cloth-cover

whereon a pattern
Yet so

been

im-

printed by machinery.
Not
as ours the

books of old

Things that steam can stamp and fold;

Not

as ours the

books of yore

but sometimes,

Rows

of type, and nothing more.

Ours are not the books

of old,

when they
pains, they

are the result of taking thought and

have a merit of their own

and the
as

thing that steam can stamp and fold


lovely in
its

may be

way

as the poet's missal of the thir-

teenth century, around which the illuminator's

brother

monks sang
of of

"little

choruses of
is

praise.'*

The beauty
of

the

modern book
There
will

not

that

the book

yore.

always

be

between

them the

difference

which separates

work done by machine from work done by


hand

difference

wide

enough,

and

deep
vol-

enough, to admit of no denial.

But the

Bookbindings Old mid New.


umes stamped by steam may have
charm and
their

73

their

own
noth-

own

quaUties

to

say

ing of their superior fitness for the nineteenth


century,

when democracy

is

triumphant.

Designed by Margaret N. Armstrong.

Published by Charles Scribners Sons.

"ART

OUT-OF-DOORS," BY MRS. SCHUYLER VAN RENSSELAER.

The books bound

in

thousands for pubHshers

are mostly ill-bound from haste and greed, from

ignorance and reckless disregard of

art.

But

once

in

way they

attain

a surprisingly high

74

Bookbindings Old mid New.


Just

level.

how

excellent
are,
;

some modern comus

mercial bindings

scarcely any of
for

have

taken time to discover

we

are prone to over-

look not a few of the best expressions of con-

Designed by Mis. Henry Whitman.

Published by Houghton, Mifflin

it.

Co.

^^("^

"AN

ISLAND GARDEN," BY CELIA THAXTER.

temporary

art,

natural

outgrowths of

modern

conditions, in

our persistent seeking for some

great manifestation which

we

fail

to find.

Of a

certainty the great manifestations of art

Bookbindings Old and New.


are
little

75

hopelessly rare;

and, as a matter

of

fact,

things far

more

often attain perfection and

reward

our

seeking.

chromolithographic

placard does not seem to promise


in

much

but
is

M. Cheret's hands the

pictorial

poster

never insipid, and has often a most engaging and


masterly originality.
material
Cast-iron
is

an unlovely
limitations,

but
on

by recognizing

its

Alfred Stevens was able to give dignity to the


little

lions

the

outer

rail

at

the

British

Museum.

So a book-cover stamped by steam


if

may be a thing of beauty Mrs. Whitman or by Mr.


is

it

is

designed by
It

Stanford White.

fact

that

commercial bookbinding, often

ignorantly looked
interesting
to

down
of
its

on,

is

now
and

at a
it

most
seems

stage

history;

me
In

very well worth while to consider some

of its recent successes.

a paper

on

"

Bookbinding considered

as

a Fine-Art, Mechanical Art and Manufacture," read before the Society of Arts in London, Mr.

Henry
ing
is

B.

Wheatley declared that

"

cloth-bind-

entirely an

English invention."

Just as
Italy dur-

the fine-art of bookbinding began in

76

Bookbindings Old and New.


Renascence, and was most highly culFrance, so
the
art
of cloth-binding,

ing the

tivated in

arising in Great Britain, has been carried to a

higher level of mechanical


chines

perfection

by main

invented

or mightily
I

improved

the

United States; and

am
are

inclined to think that

the principles which should govern the decoration of

cloth

covers

better

understood

in

New York
as
application.

than in London

in so far at least

one may judge

from the

results

of

their

While
is

it

is

true

enough that cloth-binding


binding,

an English invention, commercial


work,"
as
it

" edition

is

called,

is

almost as

old as printing

itself.

The

early printers,
in

from

Aldus

in

Venice to Caxton

London, were
;

binders as they were also publishers


early
in

and very

the

history

of

the
toil

trade

were there

attempts to simplify the

of the finisher

who
the

decorated the leather sides and backs

of

broad volumes.

In the finest of the early books

every touch of gold on the cover was


a

made by

separate

tool,

which

the

skilled

workman

impressed on the leather at least twice, once

Bookbindings Old and New.


without the gold, and once to
laborious,
affix
it,

77

a slow,

and expensive process.

One
pattern

of the first of the devices adopted as a


"

short cut was the

roulette " or

roll,

a complete

engraved

on

the

circumference of
as the wheel

wheel, and reproducing


rolled

itself

was

across

the

leather.
;

This wheel served


it

for borders

and frameworks
;

was often most

admirably engraved

and
if

its

employment was

not altogether injurious


to

proper care was taken


precision.

match the corners with

In these
foible

days
it

when

omniscience

is

everybody's

may seem
think

like affectation for

me

frankly to
of the
roll,

confess ignorance

as to the origin
first
I

but

it

was

seen in

Italy.
I

In like

manner

must avow that

do not

know
many;

for certain the origin of the next labourI

saving device, but

think
all

it

came from Gerits

and beyond
there.

question

use

was

most frequent

This was the combina-

tion of engraved blocks into a pattern


less

more or

appropriate to the book.

The

binder had
of different
in

in stock a variety of these blocks,


sizes

and independent

in

subject, or related

78

Bookbindings Old and New.


even
in

pairs, or

sets of

four

and he would

rearrange these corners, centre-pieces, and panels


as best he could to suit every succeeding book,

availing himself also of the

roll,

and

falling

back
to

on hand-work where the occasion

seemed

demand
became,

it.

Careless

as

this

method
of

often

it

was

still

a crude
of

form

design,

even though the

toil

the

hand was mini-

mized

to the utmost. to get rid

But one step needed to be taken

altogether of hand-work on the cover; this was


to engrave a design for the

whole side

of a book,

and

to

stamp
plates

it

on

at a single stroke of a press.


is

These

plaqties
first

the

French term

were probably

employed by the

Italians

but the most noted of those


of

who made

early use

them was a Frenchman, Geoffroy Tory, the


and the would-be reformer
collectors
of
of

friend of Grolier,

the

alphabet.

All

know

the

plate

he designed for the Book

Hours he
trade,

printed,

which was a staple

of the

book

and

for

which there was an unfailing demand.


plate

Tory's

was original and complete


contemporary with

in
it,

itself;

but
also

another plate

and

Bookbindings Old and New.


reproduced
in the invaluable essay of

79

M. Marius-

Michel
ciale
et

on

"

La

Reliure
is

Fran9aise,

Commer;

Industrielle,"

incomplete

it

was

intended to spare the time and trouble needed


to

adorn the

book-cover with the elaboratelyGrolier type


;

interlacing arabesques of the


it

but

left

to the

hand

of the

workman

the task of

adding the name


scattered

of the

owner

of the book, the

gold dots which greatly enriched the

appearance, and a few other details here and


there.
It
is

instructive

to

note

how
the

adroitly

the

means have been adjusted


devices,

to the end.

These three
tion
of

the

roll,

combinain-

blocks,

and the plate complete or


different stages of

complete,

mark

the develop-

ment

of

wholesale

binding;

and they existed

simultaneously for centuries.

M. Marius-Michel

declares that out of every hundred of the smaller


sized
lishers

volumes
of

sent forth

by the
century,

printer-pub-

the sixteenth

eighty have

their sides

stamped by a plate simulating handoriginal

work.

The
of

editions

of

Rabelais,

of

Montaigne,

Ronsard, and of Clement Marot,


plate-

were issued more often than not with

80

Bookbindings Old and New.


sides.

marked

There

is

in

M. Marius-Michel's

essay a drawing of a block used to aid in the


imitation of the brilHant fanfares of
con."
"

Le Gas-

There
"

is

in

M. Gruel's

"

Manuel Histo-

rique
in

a most sumptuous binding by Derome,


at
all,

which there was no hand-tooling

save

perhaps a monogram or a coat-of-arms here and


there
;

it

is

formed by combining corners and

border-pieces,

and

it

was stamped

in a press.

The
Italian,
it

chief characteristic of the early

German,
is

and French commercial binding


of
artistic

that

was an imitation
It

binding

done
to

wholly by hand.
pass
was,
fails.

was a humbug trying


it

itself off

as

something other than


of

really

and
It

failing,

course,

as

fraud

always
it

was forever forging the designs


of

found on the books


very
often
its

the

best binders
stupid,

and

thefts

were

although

once in a while they were adroit.

Now

this

copying was
sonal

foolish,

because in art the impernever


rival

machine

can
is

the

personal

hand

for art

indeed only individuality.


"

M.
a

Zola defines art as

nature

seen
the

through

temperament

"

and

even

in

decorative

Bookbindings Old and New.


arts

i8i

personality
all

is

omnipotent.

But by aban-

doning
ern
of

thought of imitating hand-work, modfair

commercial bookbinding has a


its

chance

developing according to
tireless

own
of

conditions.

The machine has


and absolute
set the

power
it

production

regularity;

and

is

for those

who

machine going
all

to supply that
art
is

personal

touch without which

as nausfht. o

"

II.

THE MERITS OF MACHINE BINDING.


This
cial
is is

the

great merit of

modern commer-

bookbinding done by machinery


it

that

it

independent, that

has freed
of

itself

from the

trammels and the traditions


it

hand-work, that

is

no

longer
it

savourless

sham
It

copying

blindly, that

lives its

own

life.

recognizes

the

fact,
all

obvious enough nowadays, that

we

can-

not

be as Heber, to
folio

whom

Ferriar sang:

The

Aldus loads your happy shelves,


Elzevirs, like fairy elves,

And dapper
Shew

their light

forms amidst the

well-gilt twelves.

In this change Great Britain and the

United

States

have led the way, followed for once by


and,
after

France,
It

an

interval,

by Germany.
" half-binding

was
its

in frugal

Germany

that
is

had

origin.

Half-binding

money-sav-

ing contrivance, which

lordly book-lovers
to

have

reprobated as

equivalent
182

genteel

poverty.

Bookbindings Old and New.

83

The
of

Jansenists used to keep the

leather
;

sides

their

books

free

from ornament

and some

sparing

German

carried this simpHcity one step

further, substituting
of leather

paper for the plain surface


calf

and using morocco and

only for

the back, and for a narrow but needful hinge on

each
ther
in

side.

To push
was easy
;

this

economy a
it

little

fur-

yet

and so
the

came

to

pass

the

last

century that

English

binders

altogether omitted the leather, and covered with

paper both the sides and back.


ing, those

Strictly speakat all


;

books were not bound

they

were merely cased

that

is,

sheathed in boards.

casing of this kind was the most temporary of

makeshifts.
are

Every

librarian

knows how

fragile

the

paper and pasteboard which


of

envelop
is

the

books

the

last

century.
off,

The back
method was

prone to crack and to peel


are

and the sides


as

prompt

to

break away

the

slovenly and as inconvenient as possible.

Early

in

this

century the
to

disadvantage
the

of

paper-covered boards led

use of

plain

glazed calico in place of the paper.


at
first

There was
:

no thouqht

of

decoration

the

plain

"

84

Bookbindings Old and New.


was substituted
it

calico

for

the

plain

paper be-

cause

was stronger and did not chip and


;

tear quite so easily

the

title

was

still

printed

on a

label of

white paper, and pasted on the

back of the volume.

The

exact date
I

of

this

improvement

is

in

doubt,

have among

my

Sheridaniana the third edition of Dr. Watkins's


*'

Memoirs

of the Public

and Private Life

of the

Right Honourable Richard Brinsley Sheridan,


printed for

Henry Colburn

in

181 8, and

both

volumes are clad

in glazed calico, with a slightly


tint.

ribbed surface and of a faded purple


date of the
"

The

biography

is

that

of

the

binding.
of

Constable's

Miscellany,"
in

the

publication
to

which was begun


the
first

1827, said

have been
;

collection regularly

bound

in cloth

the

cases were covered in the simplest fashion with


plain calico,

and distinguished by a paper

label.

The

edition of

Byron's works in seventeen volin

umes published
been the
label,
first

1833

is

supposed to have

work issued without the paper


title
;

and with the

printed in gold on the

backs of the books


series of
"

but certain

volumes
"

of

Oxford English Classics


this "

may

per-

haps have preceded

Byron."

Desig-ned Dy

Hugh Thomso
"

Published by Macmillan

Si

Co,

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE."

BY JANE AUSTEN.

Bookbindings Old and New.

187

Stamping was probably done by a handpress,


such as British binders kept ready to impress

on the

sides

of

leather-covered

volumes

the
this

broad block with the owner's arms.


" arming-press,"

From
has

as

it

was

called,

been

evolved

by

slow

degrees

the

powerful
bindery.

and

rapid machinery of the


ray's
"

modern
"

Murfirst

Family Library

was probably the

series

on

which
ink.

the

title

was
in

printed
1832,
in

with

ordinary
Knight's
"

Then came,
the

Charles
1833, his

"Penny Magazine," and,


Cyclopaedia,"

Penny

successive

volumes

of

which were bound by Archibald Leighton

in

stamped
the the

cloth.

Mr. Wheatley says that

at

first

cloth was

stamped before
proceeding
the

it

was put
proved
so
the

on

boards,

which

unsatisfactory

from
covered

beginning,
cloth,

boards

were

with

which

was

then stamped.
Thereafter the art speedily improved.
cloth

The
it

was dyed
run

to

any desired colour; and


rollers

was

through

to

give

it

any de-

sired grain or texture.

The
and

old-fashioned arm-

ing-press

was

modified

made

stronger;

88

Bookbi)idings Old
steam

and New.
for
foot-

and

was

swiftly

substituted

power.

Subsequent improvements enabled the

pattern to be imprinted on the side and back


of

the book

in

as

many

colours

as

an

artist

Designed by Harold B. Shetwin (the Figure by

J. L.

Kiplmgj.

Published by D. Appleton

&

Co.

"MANY

INVENTIONS," BY

RUDYARD

KIPLING.

could use to advantage


willing
to

or

the
the

publisher was

pay

for.

And
for

work
;

can be
is

done

with

extraordinary

speed

it

no

unusual thing

now

a bindery to turn out

Bookbindings Old and New.


several

89
the

thousand

copies

of

book

in

course of twenty-four hours.

Here we
between

come

to

the

essential

difference

bookbinding by hand and bookbindIn


artistic

ing by machinery.

hand-work the

Designed by Margaret N. Armstrong.


Published by Charles Scribner's Sons.

!?

EVENING TALES," BY JOEL CHANDLER HARRIS.

book
In

is

bound

in

leather
cloth

and then decorated.


case
is

edition

work the
apart

made and
which
is

decorated
is

from

the
in.
its

book

itself,

afterward

fastened

The former

slow process, and in

higher manifestations

IQO
it

Bookbiiidiup-s
an
it

Old mid New.


is

is

art.

The
of
it

latter

rapid
in

process,

and
as

is

wholly mechanical, except


the

so

far

the

designer

stamp
the
of

is

concerned.
the

And

therefore

is

on
lies

designer of

stamp that the duty

making

beautiful

Designed by D. S. Maccoll.

Published by T. Fisher Unw'n, London.


S.

"GREEK VASE

PAINTINGS," BY D.

MACCOLL AND

J.

E.

HARRISON.

the

books

demanded

by

our

modern

and

democratic civilization.
In

Great
to

Britain

those

who were
for

called
of

upon

invent

ornament

the

outside

clothbound

books were

free

from the

disad-

Bookbindings Old and New.


vantages under which their fellow-labourers

191
in
still

France

were

placed.

In

France

there

lingered the dominating influence of the traditions


past,

of

the

great

bibliopegic

artists

of

the

and there was pressure on the designer


a decoration which should

to devise

make

his

machine-made cloth cover look


tooled

like the

slowly
In

leather

of

book bound by hand.


solid
cloth-casincr

Eng-land
hailed
as

where
a

the

was
the

manifest

improvement
had
no

on

flimsy

paper-boards
it,

which
existed
to

immediately
pressure,

preceded
for

there

such

no one seemed

see

any necessary con-

nection
old

between the new cloth-work


leather-work.
to

and the
designers
of

artistic

So
a

the

were

at

liberty

develop
to

new form
conditions.

decoration
this

suitable

the

new

In

endeavour
;

they

have been
is

unexpectedly

successful
of
its

indeed,

there
art

hardly any form

modern decorative
aim more

which has achieved

satisfactorily.

One might

hazard

the

suggestion

that

there

has been less copy-

ing and less conventionality, more inventiveness

and greater appropriateness,

in the

commercial

192

Bookbindings Old and New.

bindings of England and America during the


past thirty years than in the avowedly artistic
"

extra

" bindinsr.

Of
lions

course
of

there

have

been

countless

mil-

tomes

disfigured

by hideous covers
can
of recall

and

of course everv

one

of us

cloth

cases

which were the

epitome

everything
of

they should not be.

But a selection

ma-

chine-made covers most pleasing to the trained


taste
is

equally easy.

When Thoreau
Concord
and

bought

back the many unsold copies


"

of his first book,

A Week
he

on

the

Merrimac

Rivers," remarking with characteristic that

humour
nine

had

now

librar}^

of

nearly

hundred
of

volumes,

more

than

seven

hundred

which he had written himself, he had added


books probably quite as appro-

to his collection

priately

bound
if

as those

which he owned

before.
his
in

No
"

doubt
"

he could see the neat


wears

attire

Walden
trim

now

that

it

is

included

the

and

tasteful

Riverside Aldine

Series,

Thoreau would acknowledge that he could ask


no
fitter

garb for his offspring.

Nor could

there

be anything more

modestly satisfactory

Bookbindings Old and New.


than
the
in

193
httle

maidenly
this
series,

simpHcity
with
their

of

the

tomes
cloth,

smooth blue
and
with

with

their

chaste

lettering,

Designed by Alice E. Morse.

Published by the Century Co.


B.

'THE CHATELAINE OF LA TRINITE," BY HENRY

FULLER,

&

"^

the golden anchor of Aldus


of

a hopeful
for
this

emblem

good books yet


In

to

come.
to select

comparing many modern books


and
examples

illustrations

paper,

94

Bookbindings Old and New.


been
led
to

have
is

the

conclusion
to

that

there
in

more thought
United

given

book-decoration
in

the

States

than

Great

Britain.

Designed by Hugh Thomson.

Published by Kegan Paul, Trench, Triibner

&

Co., London.

"

THE BALLAD OF BEAU BROCADE," BY AUSTIN DOBSON.

There are not a few beautiful book-covers


be found in the shops of
but not so many,
I

to

British

booksellers,

venture to think, as might

be collected from

American

publishers.

And

195

Designed by Laurence Housnnan.

Published by Macm'llan

&

Co.

"GOPLIN MARKET."

BY CHRISTINA ROSSETTI.
197

Bookbindings Old and New.


the reason of
British
this,
I

199

take
of

it,

is

partly that the

are

borrowers

new

books

rather
still

than

buyers,

and partly that the

British

desire to have the


finally in

books worth ownino- bound

leather,

and they therefore


case
as

still

look

upon

the

cloth

merely a temporary
reader,
for

convenience.

The American

the

most

part,
;

accepts the cloth binding" as a per-

manency
therefore,

and the American publisher


to

is

moved,

expend more time and attention


of

on the decoration
sale.

the

books he

offers

for

Consider, for example, the gaudy cover which


the
"

British publisher put


of the

on Mr.

Du

Chaillu's
it

Land

Midnight Sun," and compare


E.

with
the

that

prepared by Mr.
edition.

A. Abbey

for

American

true book-lover would


Chaillu's

be in haste to get Mr.


ing work out of

Du

entertain;

the British cloth case

but he

would

feel

it

absurd to wish to rebind a copy


Mr.

adorned with

Abbey's

cover.

He would
a book

be ready to echo Hawthorne's protest against


those
to put

who
it

"strip off

the real skin of

into fine clothes."

"

200

Bookbindings Old and New.

Again, take Mr. Vedder's remarkable edition


of

Fitzgerald's

"

Rubaiyat of

Omar Khayyam,"
most sumptuone's
self

for

which the
rcbind this

artist
folio,

designed the cover-stamp.

To
ous

even
is

in the

crushed

levant,

to

deprive

of not

the least interesting of the illustrations

by which the American painter has interpreted


the

Persian poet.

And what

could be

more

ingenious or more characteristic than the Dutch


tile

which

is

seemingly set
"

into

the
in

golden

cover of the
of

Sketching Rambles

Holland

Mr, George

H.

Boughton and Mr. E. A.

Abbey }
Simplicity
is

an ingredient of

dignity,

and

there are book-lovers


all

who

love simplicity above


taste

things,

having a Jansenist

even in
noisy or

cloth

bindings.
in

There

is

nothing

fussy
"

the

cover of

Mr.
to
in

Harold Frederic's
the the
pencil
of of

In

the

Valley,"

due
or

Mr.
Mr.

Harold
Aldrich's

Magonigle,
" Sisters'

cover
its

Tragedy," with
myrtle

severe

and
Mrs.

yet

elegant

wreath

designed
also

by
is

Whitman.
for

To
the

Mrs.

Whitman

due the credit

tea-leaf

border of

Dr.

Published by Houghton, Mifflin

&

Co.

"RUBAIYAT

Ol-'

OMAR KHAYYAM."
20

'

Bookbindings Old and New.


Holmes's
ous
"

203
vigor-

Over the Tea-cups


and
its

"

with

its

lettering,

subordinate teapot of a

fashion

now gone

by.

None

of

Mrs.

Whit;

man's book-covers are frivolous or finicky

they

have always reserve and purity.

Yet decorations
not alone on

of

this

chaste
;

severity are

our book-shelves

and there are


principles

not

few devised
in
is

on

other

and
satis-

compounded
faction

another fashion.
in

Some
old

there

finding

an

German
cover
of

woodcut border doing duty on


Mr. Woodberry's
ing,"
"

the

History of
the

Wood
apt
its

Engravof

or

in

observing
its

use

the

orange with
as

full

fruit

and
the

green leaves
of

they

are

wreathed

in

arabesques
the
"

the

medallions

which

adorn

back

and
in

side of

Mr. Lafcadio

Hearn's
Indies,"

Two

Years

the

French

West

and

which

were
full

designed by Miss Alice

E. Morse, with a

understanding of the value of colour on a bookcover,

and an apt appreciation


it

of

the technical

means whereby

is

best to be attained.

It is essential to

good decorative design, whatit

ever

its

kind, whether

be a book-cover or a

204

Bookbindings Old and New.


a

wall-paper,

carpet
inlaid

or
floor,

tapestry,

carved
shall

panel

or an

that the

artist

recognize
technical

technical

limitations,

shall

preserve
in

possibilities,

and

shall

be

symdec-

pathy with the


orative
of
will
artist

materials employed.
swift
to

The

must be

seize

that one

the

processes
suit

presenting themselves which

best
for

his

immediate

object.
lies

"

One
the

reason

our

modern

failures

in

multitude of our
F.
of

facilities,"

suggests Mr. Lewis


"

Day

in his

little

book on the

Application
"

Ornament,"

and he adds that


is

the the

secret

of

the ancient triumphs


of the

often

in

sima

plicity

workman's resources."
tool,

Where
tool

man

has but a single

he must perforce
single

devise

ornament which

that

can

accomplish, or else go without ornament altogether.

Out

of

the

struggle

comes strength.

When we
matic
artist

see

the rather violently polychrothat

cover
Jules

which

most

accomplished

Jacquemart
"

placed
illustrated

on

the

book

on

"

La

Ceramique
but

by him, we

cannot

wonder whether
us

he

would
and

not

have

given

something quieter

more

Designed by G. A. Laundy.

Publishud by George Bell and Sons.

"HALF HOURS WITH AN OLU


201;

GOLl'liR."

Bookbindings Old and New.


beautiful
if

207
colour-

the

resources

of

modern
to

printing

had

not

been

ready

his

hand.
:

And
the
try

yet,

nothing
artist,

venture, nothing
if

have
get

the

decorative
little

he

wishes

to

outside

circle

of

every-day
fortunes

banality,

must

the

hazard of

new

as

often and

Designed by Harold B. Sherwin.

Published by the Cf>n-tury Co.

il'i'

PANEL FROM BACK AND COVER OF "OLD ITALIAN MASTERS."

as boldly as the explorer or the soldier.

Often

he

will

discover strange countries fair to see,


will

which he

annex forthwith.
search
for

Sometimes the
warded
only
of

novelty

is

re-

by a

chance

fantasticality.

volume

ghost-stories

by Mrs,

Molesworth

2oS
liad

Bookbi/KiliNgs
a
plain
as

Old and New.


from
the
side
of

cloth

cover,
at
it,

which,

one gazed
start

there seemed sudfigure

denly to

a
did

shadowy

due
remove
its

to

stamp which
glaze
of

no more than
not changing
"

the

the calico,

colour.

Colonel Norton's glossary of

Political

Americloth

canisms" was covered with


turned inside
grain,
out,

a dark-blue
a

and
there

exposing

blue-gray
in

on which

was
title,

printed,
set
off

the

original

dark blue, the


of

by the But

figure

the
trifles

fearsome

gerrymander.
freaks
of

these

are

the

casual

com-

mercial bibliopegy.

III.

THE SEARCH FOR NOVELTY.

More
ber
of

fertile

is

the

effort to

to

find

special

cloths for special


fabrics

books,

enlarge
the

the

num-

from

which

binder

may
bookthe

choose.

The very
of

step in advance

which M.

Octave Uzanne urged upon the


binders

artistic

France

has

been
of

taken
;

by

commercial bookbinders
are
into

America
stuffs

and we

constantly
the
service.
of

seeing

new

impressed
the
in-

M.

Uzanne claims
la

vention

the

cartonnage a
a light

Pompadour,
tale

the clothing of

and

lively

of

the

eighteenth century in a
of

brocade
almost

or a

damask

the

period.

This

is

exactly what

a publisher in Boston did

when he
of

sent

forth
in

Mrs. Higginson's
the cotton

"

Princess

Java," clad
It

which the
in

Javanese wear.

was

what a publisher
sent
forth
p

New York
209

did
''

when he
Youma,"

Mr.

Lafcadio

Hearn's

2 lo
the

Bookbindings Old and New,


story
of

slave,

covered with
dress
in.

the

sim-

ple fabric

that

slaves

It

was what
sent
forth

a
a
"

London publisher
tiny
little

did
of

when

he

tome

old-time

fashions,

Our Grandmothers' Gowns," bound with The American


edition
"

the

chintzes and calicoes of bygone days.


of

Charles

Lamb's

" Poetry

for

Children

was issued by Messrs,


in

Charles

Scribner's

Sons

half-binding
is

of

some woven

material

such as

used
;

in

the

nursery for the pinafores of childhood

and the

same publisher covered Mr.


account of
"

Riis's

stimulating

How

the Other Half Lives," with

a stuff very like that from which the labourer's


overalls are
for a

made, a most appropriate garment


like

book

Mr,

Riis's.

Messrs. Houghton,
of a

Mifflin

&

Co. have

made experiment
silk;

more
it

aesthetic fabric,

Persian

they used
" Strangers

for

the

back

of

Miss

Jewett's
it

and

Wayfarers," on which
the white side
rative lettering
silk
;

contrasted boldly with

bearing

Mrs. Whitman's

deco-

imprinted in the colour of the


it

and they employed

again for Brown"

ing's latest

volume

of

poems,

Asolando," in

Bookbindings Old mid New.


this

case

covering

the whole

book,

one

side

of

which was further decorated by a dignified


and border
I

panel
ing.

of

Mrs.

Whitman's design-

know

of

no recent commercial binding


than
this,

more

satisfactory

or

more adequate

%/ ;,i

A,S
I

!^^

J.bl'^"

Ui

yc

,^

.TSiV

1,^

-y

-S:

Jy J

j:..

-^'.

-^

'^J-

-^ -^

~J-

-^J? ...-<;

A copy

of the

sampler worked by the "girl."

Lettered by A. Hilgen[ii^'f
(.

reiner, die-cutter.

Published by Charles Scribner's Sons,

O-'i^^

"A
to
its

GIRL'S LIFE 8o

YEARS AGO," BY ELIZA SOUTHGATE BOWNE.

"^

'-

purpose, the appropriate sheathing

of

poet's last words.

This same

house published

the

"

Book

of

the Tile Club," a portly folio

bound

in sturdy

Bookbindings Old and Xew.

canvas
vin

material already used

by Mr. MarSons) in
"

(for

Messrs.
of "

Charles
Girl's

Scribner's

the cover

Life

So Years Aero
in

(whereon
of

the

title

was

printed
a

imitation
fantasy).

a
"

child's

sampler,
Tile

pleasant
''

The
a

Book

of the

Club

was
its

altogether
delightfully

more imposing tome, with


by Mr.
(not

decorative side-stamp

Stanford

White,

with
sive)

its

prominent

to call

them aggresits

ner\'es across

the

back,

with

brass-

bound

corners, with every

page separately and


and with
wherein
the

securely
its

mounted on

a linen guard,

personal

and peculiar
portraits

end-papers
or

we can
Tilers,
"

trace the

insignia of

with

even,'
of

one

his

7iom

de

giierre.

The
;

Book
and
it

the
its

Tile

Club
fairly

"

was

aimed

high

hit

mark

and squarely

in the bull's eye.

End-papers of special design are


refinements
of

among
might

the

book-making, which

be

seen oftener than they are

when

publishers are

giving time and thought to the

preparation
in
"

of

an exceptional volume.

Those

the

Grolier

Club edition

of the " Philobiblon

were admirably

Stanford Vi'h

te.
'

Published by Houghton, Mifflin &. Co.

A BOOK OF THE TILE


21
;

CLUB.'

ItU

Bookbindings Old and New.


in

215

keeping with the


useful, as

text.

They may even be


in

made
maps.

they were

Dr. Eggleston's

histories of

the

United States, where they are


this sort

But supplementary delicacies of


in
is

can be expected only when,

the phrase of the


illustrated

cockney

art-critic, "

the

book

by the

celebrated French artist


Still

De

Luxe."

rarer
in

is

another ancillary adornment to

be found
Loftie's
cal."
"

certain proof copies of


:

Mr.

W.

J.

Kensington
it

Picturesque and Histori-

These,
"

was announced by the publisher,

would
front,

have painted in water-colours on the


gilt

under the

edges of the leaves, a couple


until the leaves are

of

Kensington views, which,


at

bent back

an angle,

will

be invisible."

In Mr.
of

S. P. Avery's

copy

of the Grolier

Club edition

Irving's

"

Knickerbocker," the water-colours unof

der the

gilt

the fore-edge are

the
is

work

of

Mr. G. H. Boughton.
sus.

But

this

an

excur-

There are so many byways

of

booklore

that the book-lover can hardly help digressing


occasionally.

IV.

STAMPED LEATHER.

From

the beginning commercial binding has


itself chiefly

concerned

with cloth, with but an

occasional venture with other fabrics,


dimity, or silk.

hnen, or
which

The few
full

copies of certain single

books, and of
publishers
half-calf,

sets of certain authors,

now and
tree-calf,

again advertise as ready in


or in

in

crushed levant-mo;

rocco are not really commercial bindings


are

they

more or

less artistic

bindings done chiefly by

hand, but done wholesale.


to be avoided
really well

Generally they are


to see their

by

all

who hope

books

bound, for they lack the loving care

with which a conscientious craftsman treats the


single

volume intrusted

to

him

to bind as best

he

can

and they are

also without

the

merits of

another sort which we find in


coverings.

the best cloth

Sometimes,

of course, the sets

which

publishers offer in leather are honestly forwarded


216

Designed by Stanford White.

Published by the Century Co.

"THE CENTURY DICTIONARY."


217

Bookbindings Old and New.


and thoroughly finished
:

but for the most part

they are hasty and soulless.

To

the

true

book-lover's

eye

no

crushed

levant can be too fine or too magnificent for the

book he truly loves

In red morocco drest he loves to boast,

The bloody murder,


Or dismal
ballads,

or the yelling ghost

sung to crowds of old,

Now

cheaply bought for thrice their weight in gold.


this,

Knowing

some American publishers have


bound
in

issued the whole edition of certain books


in full leather,

and with the covers stamped

appropriate designs.
of

Here we have the methods


applied
to

the best

cloth-binding

the

best

material, leather.

These books are


though
the

as carefully

forwarded and finished as

they were

hand-work
the
purist

indeed, almost

only objection

might make against them would be


;

the saw-cuts in the back

and

this

objection
is

is

minimized by the

fact that the

volume
will

now

permanently clothed, and that there


fore be

there-

no need

to

rebind

it.

Although plates were engraved even


fifteenth century
to

in

the

stamp the

sides

of

leather-

220

Bookbindings Old and New.


practice

bound books, the


so far as

had long ceased except and bibles

dictionaries, prayer-books,
;

were concerned
the
side,

and even
imitation
orio-inal

in

its

palmiest days
a

plate

was an

of

hand-tooled
of

and not an
to

desio;n

a nature
It
is

appropriate

the individual book.

the

Designed by George Wharton Edwards.

Published by the Century Co.

<K

"THUMB-NAIL SKETCHES," BY GEORGE WHARTON EDWARDS.

quality
that
it

of

modern
separated

commercial
itself

bookbinding
from
it

has
of

wholly

the

traditions

hand-tooling,
merits.

and that
the the
for

stands

on

its

own

Consider
of

massive

and
Mr.

substantial

solidity

side-stamp
the
"

Stanford

White

designed

Cen-

Designed by Howard Pyle.

Published by Charles Scribner's Sons.

"THE MERRY ADVENTURES OF ROBIN HOOD," BY HOWARD


221

PYLE.

(^S5

Bookbindings Old and New.


tury
is

223
it

Dictionary,"

and

note

how

different

in its

vigorous firmness from even the most


Technically,
this
dic-

elaborate hand-toohng.

tionary cover
is

is

most

interesting, for the design

impressed on

damp

sheepskin by a heated
tone of
the leather,

plate,

which changes the

thus imparting to the decoration colour as well


as
relief.

Although
of

recall

the stamped leather cover


of

the

photolithographic facsimile

the

first

folio of

Shakspere,

with Teutonic tradition,

blind-tooled accordance think that only


in
I

it

is

within the past few years, and here in the United


States, that publishers

have made a practice of


of

issuing

the

whole edition
in leather

certain

beautiful

books bound
as

stamped by machinery
Mr. Howard Pyle's
"

though

it

were

cloth.

re-

setting of

"

Robin Hood

was issued by Messrs.

Charles Scribner's Son's in 1883 with a leather


cover embossed
the artist-author.
illustrated

with a

Dureresque design by
the lovely volumes
collab-

Then came
Alfred

by Mr. E. A. Abbey with the


Mr.
Parsons,

oration

of

and published

by Messrs. Harper

&

Brothers.

For Goldsmith's

224

Boo/cd/ //(//// OS
to

Old and New.


folio,

"She Stoops
Stanford

Conquer," an ample
devised
a

Mr.

White
tasteful,

cover
;

decoration,

modern,

and

graceful

border

sur-

rounded the two sides and the back, here treated


as
if

they were a single plane surface (although

outlined straps crossed the back); and a cartouche

on the side held the

title of

the

work and the


the sprightly
it.

name

of

the artist

who had made

aad refined drawings that

illustrated

The

gold of the letterinar was of a different tone from


the gold of the decorative design
;

and by another
filled

mechanical device the

filleted

border was

by a ribbed

surface,
this,

Quite as effective as

although
Life
its
"

simpler,

was the cover

of "

The Quiet
with
the
to

of

Messrs,
of

Abbey
flowers,

and
also

Parsons,

powder
of

due
the

ingenuity

Mr.

White.

From
"

same publishers have since


"

come the
tors,

Old Songs

by the same

illustra-

the

"Sonnets by William Wordsworth,"


by
of

with
"

drawings

Mr.

Parsons
of

alone,

and

The Boyhood
the

Christ,"
of
spirit

General

Lew
conearlier

Wallace,

covers

which
as

were
the

all

ceived in the same

two

225

Bookbindings Old and New.


books, although they lacked
distinction

227
of

something

the

Mr. White gave to his handiwork.


of

For the edition

Longfellow's

"

Hiawatha,"

to the illustrating of

which Mr. Frederic Rem-

ington brought his extraordinary knowledge of


Indian

manners

and

modes

of

thought,

the
Co.,

publishers,

Messrs.

Houghton,
appropriate

Mifflin

&
of

prepared a most
skin,
this

cover

buckof

and on the rough, brown-red surface


Mrs. Whitman's side-stamp stood out

brill-

iantly.

So

far

as

know, buckskin had not


bookbinding
to in

before been used in

America,
to

although
clothe the

it

seems

be

fit

material
:

many books

of frontier life

the late
of

Edouard Fournier records


old
as

that
of

many
to

the
so,

monkish bindings were


usual,

deerskin

the

novelty

turns

out

be

an

antiquity.

Vellum, which was once a favourite material


with the old bookbinders, has gone out of use

almost

everywhere
in

except

in

Italy.

It

was
of

employed
Joseph

covering the
for

"

Autobiography
Mr.

Jefferson,"

which

George

Wharton Edwards designed

a rich

and ingen-

228

Bookbindings Old and New.


embossed on
also
utilized

ious Renascence side-stamp to be

the yielding leather.

Vellum was
to

bv the Grolier Club


edition of the
"

clothe

its

unequalled
this

Philobiblon,"

but in
seal
of

case

the only decoration was the

the

good

Bishop

of Bury.

Here
the
art

come

to

the

end

of

my

notes

on
art

of

commercial

bookbinding,
age,
is

an

which, in this mechanic


flourishing
in
It
is

perhaps most
of

this

country

inventive

mechanics.

one of the
art

most

important
art.

forms

of

household
understood,

of

decorative

Properly
tised, it is

and

intelligently

prac-

capable of educating the taste even


of

of the

thoughtless, and
to

giving

keen enjoy-

ment
sake.
it

those

who
to

love

books for their own


to

There needs no argument


not an
the
art

prove that
called

is

despise

which has

forth

energy of M.
of

Giacomelli

and Jules

Jacquemart,

Mr.
of

William

Morris

and

Mr.

Walter Crane,
Vedder, and
ford

Mr. E. A. Abbey, Mr. Elihu


Pyle,
of

Mr. Howard

Mr. Stan-

White and Mrs. Wliitman.

Designed by
"

J. A.

Schweinfurth.

Published by
13Y

Little,

Brown

&

Co.
'.

THE OREGON

TRAIL,"

FRAHCIS PARKMAN.

tfty

229

BOOKS IN PAPER-COVERS.

BOOKS IN PAPER-COVERS.

I.

THE SUMMER CLOTHES OF

FICTION.

When

the soliloquizer in the Spanish Cloister


soul's

wished to consign Brother Laurence, his


abhorrence, to

sudden and certain damnation,


to

he

determined
his
is

place

within

his

enemy's
to

reach
at

"

scrofulous

French

novel,"

look

which

the ruin of the soul.


it

Although the
as

poet does not so declare


I

in

many
a

words,

have

always

believed

that

this

scrofulous

French novel was loosely clad


yellow paper,
flimsy

in

cover of
as

beyond question, and

easily destroyable

as the

soul of Brother Lau-

rence.

Whether

it

be due

to

the

French
to

fiction
afflicted

which the British bard declared


with the king's
evil,

be

or whether

it

be due to our

234

Bookbindings Old and New.


stories,

American
of

sentimental and adventurous,

the

kind familiar since the war as

"dime

novels," or

whether

it

be due to some more


is

recondite
that
"

cause, there

no denying the
"
is

fact

yellow-covered literature

not in good

odour with book-lovers.

Even

the collector

who
so

nowadays

despises

nothing,

be

it

never

humble, treats with contempt volumes stitched


into

paper-covers
call

mere
So

h'ocJntres,
I

as

the

French

them.
is

far as

know, not any


books
of
all

book-lover
sorts

now gathering
to swift

the

which go forth

oblivion

guarded

against hard usage only by a wrapper of paper.

There are

collectors of book-plates, of
I

postage-

stamps, of pictorial posters, but

have never

heard of a collector of paper-covers.


as the paper-cover

And

yet,

must needs be the work

of

a typographer or of a colour-printer, of a lithog-

rapher or of

designer in

black

and white,
should be

there seems to be no reason

why

it

scorned
for this

when

all else is

cherished.

The

reasons

neglect
the

are

not

easy to declare

when
for
for

we consider

many wrappers prepared


novels,

magazines, for catalogues, for

and

No. v.]

AUGUST,

1870.

[Price

One

Shilling.

LONDON: CHAPMAN & HALL,


Advertisements to be sent to the Publi shers ana
(. righto; Trordation
is

193, PICCADILLY. ADAMS & FRANCIS, 59, Fleet Street


reicrvei-l

E.O.

Bookbindings Old and New.


children's

237

books, by artists

like

Messrs. Elihu

Vedder and Stanford White, Will H.


Joseph
Pennell,

Low and
Randolph

Walter Crane and

Caldecott,

Luc

Olivier Merson, Carloz

Schwabe
"

and Jules Cheret.


In

one

of

the

pleasantest

essays

of

As
the

we were
"

saying,"

Mr. Warner

discusses

Clothes of Fiction," and remarks on the sumof

mer and the winter apparel


certainly as
of

romance.

"

As
the

the

birds

appear comes the crop

summer

novels,

fluttering

down upon

stalls,

in procession

through the railway

trains,

littering the

drawing-room

tables, in light paper-

covers,
fanciful

ornamented
designs,
in

attractively in

colours

and
as

as

welcome

and grateful
winter

the
fer

girls

muslin.

...
the

In
rich,

we

pre-

the

boards
light

and
the

heavy binding,
be
;

however

tale

may

but

in

the

summer, though the


tragic

fiction

be as grave and

as

wandering love and bankruptcy, we


it it

would have
of

come
were."

to

us

lightly

clad

out
underfitting

stays,

as

The

publishers

stand this desire of the


forth
their

public,
in

and they send


loosely

summer

novels

238

Bookbindings Old and New.

garments

fancy
it

flannel

shirts,

so

to

speak,

and striped

blazers.

Sometimes,

may
as

be,

the

outside

is

adorned
inside
"

with
the

an

illustration

taken

from

the

of of

book,

were

Mr.

Janvier's

Uncle

an Angel," made attractive by Mr.

Smedley's alluring picture of Narragansett Pier,

and

M.

Daudet's

"

L'Immortel,"
dancer.

brightened

by M. Rossi's pert
the wrapper
as
is

ballet

Sometimes

treated with decorative sobriety,


"

was Mr. Howells's


its

Hazard

of
of

New
fate.

Fort-

unes," with
times,

sombre symbol
outside

Some-

indeed, the

cover

is

merely an
typographic

external title-page, having a chaste

beauty

quite

distinct
:

from

the

pictorial
is

and
the

from the decorative


stiff

such, for

example,
Vinne's
"

paper casing

of

Mr.

De

Plantin
it

and the Plantin-Moretus Museum,"


sent forth by the Grolier Club.

as

was

But

this typo-

graphic severity would


perhaps,
if

seem a

little
:

austere,

applied to a

summer
to

novel

yet

it

is

thus that the popular


series
is

Scribner yellow-covered
this,

attired.

Akin
are

and yet not


designed

wholly

similar,

the

side-stamps

Bookbindings Old and New.


by
Mr. Stanford

239

White and by Mr. Francis

Lathrop

for the successive collections of proofs

from the Century magazine.


In
in

England

the

railway

novel

is

incased

boards sheathed with paper; and this cover

PROOFSFRPM SCKIBNERS MoNTHLYAND-S" NICHOLAS'

SECOND'

SEKIES-

.SCRjBNEildr

CO

NEW-YOR.K'

FR.EDEMCK

WAKNE & CO -LONDON'


1881

DESIGNED BY FRANCIS LATHROF.


is

adorned more often


illustration
in

than
of

not with

crude
in

and hard
story,

some

scene

the

printed void

three
art

colours

generally,
of

and
sort.

wofuUy

of

or

charm

any

240

Bookbindings Old and New.


"

Mr. William Morris has reminded us that


give people pleasure
perforce
tise,

to

in

the

things

they must
office

that
to

is

the

one

great
pleasure

of

decoration

give

people

in

the

P3-FR0n-SCRIBNER'S^-

S-MONTHLY-AND-p
M3-ST-NlCH0LASl^^

THECENTU RY CO

UNiON-SQUARE-NYDESIGNED BY STANFORD WHITE.

things

they
use

must
of
it."

jDerforce

make,
the

that

is

the

other

Possibly

man
that

who
he

must perforce use the ordinary


novels
is

British

railway

so

demoralized

by

them

Bookbindings Old and New.


can take
pictures

241
vulgar
;

delight

in

the

staring
of

and

on

the

covers

these

tales

but
in

surely

no man could have found pleasure


inartistic.

making anything so grotesquely


Perhaps the reason for
lack of art
is

this

stupidly violent

to be

found in a blind following


long before the recent

of a tradition established

revival
I

of the

decorative arts in Great Britain.

have

"A

Comic Alphabet," designed, etched,

and published by George Cruikshank, No. 23

Myddleton

Terrace,

Pentonville,

1837,
of
is

the

paper-cover of which has


suggestion in
cally
it,

hint

humorous
emphati-

perhaps, but which

empty and awkward.


discover
the
in

To
of
of

immense
of

advance

made

by the British
decoration
their skill
it

knowledge
the

the principles

and
in

striking

development
prin-

the application of these

ciples,

needs only a setting of this

Cruik-

shank cover over against the wrapper designed


by Mr. Walter Crane for the catalogue
Arts and Crafts
Gallery in
of

the

Exhibition
in

held

at
is

the

New
pleas-

London

1888.
it

This

indeed a

pleasure to the user, as

was obviously a

242
lire

Bookbiiidiiigs
to

Old and New.


Mr. Walter Crane's
I

the

maker.

(To

services to children, also a labour of love,

shall

return again.)
in

Another admirable wrapper made


by an American
characteristic
this

England

although
fresh

time

is

the

and

cover
the

which

Mr,

Joseph

Pennell
of

devised

for

cheaper British edition


ton's

Mr. Laurence Hut-

invaluable

"

Literary

Landmarks

of

Lonits

don."

As
as

quaint as
is

Mr. Pennell's, and in

way

original,

Miss

Armstrong's suggesin

tion of a daintily

embroidered napkin
Herrick's

which
advice

was wrapped
as to "

Mrs.

pleasant

The

Little

Dinner."
of

These designs

Mr.

Pennell's
in

and
;

Miss
it

Armstrong's were printed


in

colours

and
of

is

colours

that

the

most

attractive

recent

French paper-covers have been printed, sometimes by one of the more

modern processes

of

chromotypography, and sometimes by the elder

method

of chromolithography.

Here the paper-

cover of the published book has been influenced

by the extraordinary development


torial

of

the

pic-

poster in

France.

Many

of

the best of

the coloured wrappers of

recent French books

'!^

4^
'^

*1

=-

5!

.1;;

^^

243

Bookbindings Old and New.


have been
but pictorial
the
posters

245
through

seen

the small end of

opera-glass.

More than

once

in these cursory

papers on various phases

of the

complex

art of the

bookbinder has there

been occasion to dwell upon the interdependence of the


arts,

and upon

their reflex action


is

one on the other.


stance.

And

here

another

in-

The French

pictorial

poster was

de-

veloped by M. Jules Cheret and his followers

and

rivals just

in

time to be of use to the pubto

lishers

who wished
Cheret,

send forth their books


colours.

clad in paper coats of

many
M.

The same
M. Willette

artists M.

Grasset,

were
they

called upon,

and the book-covers which


conceived wholly in
the

designed

were

spirit of the pictorial poster.

II.

THE INFLUENCE OF THE PICTORIAL POSTER.


If " Post

no

Bills "

were the universal law nowthe good fortune to

adays, those of us
live in Paris

who have

or in

New York
art.

would be deprived
of

of

one

of the

most interesting manifestations


Perhaps
it is

modern decorative

not wholly

unfair to suggest that this nineteenth century of

ours

is

a day of

little

things,
tiles,

and that our

silver-

ware, our pottery, our

our wall-paper, our


its

woodcuts, our book-covers, each in

kind,

and

when

it is

at its best, are better

than our historic

painting, our heroic sculpture, or our grandiose


architecture.

The minor

arts

have their place in


;

the hierarchy of the beautiful

and more often

than we are willing to acknowledge, they have a

charm

of their

own and
of

a value likely to be as

lasting as those of their


sisters.

more pretentious

elder
fig|

The

idyls

Theocritus and the


these so tiny that
?

urines from

Tanagra

are
246

we

can afford to despise them

Bookbindings Old and New.

2/\.j

We
on

are

all

of

us prone to underestimate the

value of contemporary labour

when
fail

it is

bestowed

common
in a

things.

Often we

altogether to

see the originality, the elegance, the freshness,

word, the ar^,

of the

men who

are

mak-

ing the things which encompass us roundabout.


Possibly the Greek did not consider the beauty
of the vase

he used
to

daily, the

form

of

which

is

a pure joy

us

and probably the Oriental

worker

at

the

loom cannot guess the pleasure


commingling
is

we
in
is

shall take in his subtle

of colour

the wools of the rug he

weaving.

So

it

small wonder that the pictorial posters which

adorn our blank walls pass by unperceived, and


that

we do not

care to observe the skill which

has gone to their

making.
pictorial

Yet

the

recent

development

of

the
is

poster in

France

and
tion
of

in

America
all

worthy

of careful considera-

by

who

take note of the artistic currents

our time.

More
guished

than

once

has

this

or

that

distin-

French

painter

or

architect

stooped

to design a poster for the play or for the


of

book

some

friend.

But

for

the

most part the

248

Bookbindings Old and New.


muddled and
ineffec-

posters of these artists arc


tive
;

they lack the solid simplicity of


is

motive

which

the essential of a the

good advertisement
vigour
of

they are without

bold
;

design

which the poster demands


out
the
it

and they are withrelief

compression
requires.
artist,

and

of

lettering

which

These are

qualities

which

the ordinary

not seeking, has not achieved,

perhaps

because
are

he

half

despised

his

task.

These
fail

the

qualities

which no one could


of

to

find in the

work

the masters of the

poster in France, M. Jules Cheret,

M.

Willette,
dis-

M. Grasset.

In

their

advertisements we

cover a perfect understanding of the conditions


of this

form

of pictorial art.

The
that

first of

these conditions

is

that the poster

shall attract attention at all costs;


is
it

and the second


all

shall

satisfy

the eye at

hazards.

Thus we

see
it

that

the
is,

poster

may

be noisy,
it

and
a

noisy

often

no doubt,

but

must

not be violent, just as even a brass band ought

ever to play in tune.

And

the paper-cover
poster.

is

younger

sister

of

the pictorial

The
be

conditions

under

which

paper-covers

can

Bookbindings Old mid New.


effective

249
are

and accomplish

their purpose

the

same
is

as those

under which the

pictorial poster

restrained.

Indeed, the alliance between these two forms


of

chromatic
time.

decoration

had

been

close

for

some

Certain of M. Cheret's boldest and


for

most vigorous compositions were


pose of advertising

the pureditions

new books
for

or

new

M.
the
"

Robida's

"

Rabelais,"
"

example,

and

Three Musketeers

of the elder
is

Dumas.
sought
in

Perhaps the point

of contact

to be

the wrappers for sheet-music and for the scores


of operas.

The drawing prepared by M. Georges


M. Massenet's opera
to
"

Clairin for

Le Cid

"

had
in

been
like

enlarged

serve

as

poster;

and

manner M.

Willette's

delightfully

charac-

teristic

design of the old and the young Pierrots

for the witty

and pathetic pantomime


"

of "

L'En-

fant Prodigue

did double duty.

Any one who


late

has had

the

good fortune
in

of

to

spend even twenty-four hours

Italy

must have observed not a few

Italian posters,

chiefly railroad advertisements, having a quality


of

their

own, a national

note,

perhaps best to

250

Boo/cbindijigs

Old and New,

be characterized as a Inroad richness of colour


not unlike that to which

we

are accustomed in

Roman
I

scarfs

and Bellagio rugs.


I

In the

brill-

iancy of some of these posters


detected the influence of
painters;

have thought
little
I

the

group

of

Hispano-Roman

and

have

noted

also the decorative

methods

of the lithographic

designers
inartistic

who have

devised the showy but not


issued

covers for the sheet-music


publisher,
first

by

the

Milanese

Signor
of

Ricordi.

M.

Maindron, the

historian

the

pictorial

poster, has declared that

Signor Simonetti, the

water-colourist,
rate

is

to be credited with the elabo-

posters

announcing
six

the

Exposition
ago.
It

of

Turin some

or seven

years

may
are
of

be doubted whether these


really

Italian

posters

any more

effective

even

the

best

them
iant

than
is

the best of the strikino^ and

brill-

paper-covers

with which

Signor

Ricordi

adorns the music he publishes.


Fine as
Italians

not a

little

of

the

work

of these

both in the pictorial poster and in the


it

paper-cover,
of the

is

on the whole not equal to that

Frenchmen, M. Jules Cheret, M. Grasset,

Bookbindings Old and New.


and M. Willette.

25
is

Of

these,
I

M. Cheret

the

pioneer, and although


for the
I

confess a great Hking

Byzantine compositions of

M. Grasset,
is

cannot but think that M. Cheret

still

to

be hailed as the master of these two branches


of the decorative art.

We
that

are

all

profoundly grateful to M. Cheret

he has enlivened the dull gray walls of

Paris

by

lightly

draped

and

merrily

dancing

figures, giving a suggestion of life to the wintry streets of the

and warmth
capital.

French
their

These

aerial

bodies,

with

diaphanous

drapery and their swift movement, suggest the


figures frescoed

on the walls

of

Pompeii

and

M. Cheret

is

not without his share of the Latin

ease and verve which forever fixed these

Pom-

peian girls as a joy to the world.


the bold stroke of the Japanese
has, moreover, the

He
artist,

has also

and he

Japanese faculty of suppress:

ing needless details


gling,
in

for there

is

never any nig-

any finicky cross-hatching, any uncertainty,

M. Cheret's work.
of

He

is

an impressionist
impressionist

in

one sense

the word,

an

who

has a masterly

command

of line

and an absolute

252

Bookbindings Old and New.


who
uses these to

control of colour, and

make you
figure

perceive what

has impressed him.


as saucy as

The

he sketches
there
is

may be
his

you

please, but

no slouch about the composition.

To
as
this

describe

work adequately we must,

M. Henry Lavedan suggested, borrow from


decorator certain
of

his

own

colours,

lemon-yellow, and
night-blue
;

a geranium-red, and

mid-

and even then we should lack the

cunning

of the artist so to juxtapose these as to


effects.

reproduce his
is it

Almost equally
is

difBcult

to
in

reproduce here what

most representaabove
all

tive

M. Cheret's work

for

else is

he a colourist, and the attempt to translate his


w^ork
little

into
less

the

monochrome

of

typography

is

than a betrayal.

The compact and

skilful

composition can be shown, and the force


drawings; but the effort to transfer the
of the colour
is

of the

charm

foredoomed

to failure.

In M. Cheret's book-covers

we

see the

same

freshness of touch, the


of

same Japanese freedom


of

design,

the

same fantasy
skill

invention,

the

same exceedinor

in

the

combination and

contrast of simple colours, which delight us in

253

Bookbindings Old and New.


his
pictorial

255
same

posters.

We

see

also

the

ingenuity in the adapting of the means to the


end.

M. Cheret's decoration, when he has been


inspired, consists of a single design covering

most

the back and both of the sides of the wrapper,

and adroitly devised so that each side has

its

own ornament.
is

An
its

excellent

example

of

this

his cover for a sensational novel called " Pile

de

Pont,"

with

single

stalwart figure of a

man
tion

projected

blackly
of

within

the

light
its

circle
reflec-

made by an arch
in

the bridge and

the

water

flowing
its

placidly

beneath,

while the bridge extends

successive

arches

one

behind

the

other

across

the

back

and

around the other side

of the wrapper.

Another
"

example

is

the

cover of
its

M. Lefevre's

Scarasil-

mouche," with

Mephistophelian

figure

houetted sharply above the joyous

trio of Pierrot,
is

Columbine,

and

Harlequin.

This wrapper

unusually effective and harmonious in colour.

Of M.
digue
"
I

Willette's

cover for " L'Enfant

Pro-

have already made mention.


cover
for
I

Of M.
"

Grasset's

the

"

Dix Contes

of

M.

Jules

Lemaitre

have no space to speak at

256
length.

Bookbifiifijigs
It
is

Old and New.


the

one

of

most elaborate and


and,
like

sumptuous

of

French
pictorial

paper-covers,
posters,
it

M.
rich

Grasset's

suggests
stained

the

and

solid

translucency of
as

glass.

Modern and French

are

both
to

M.

Grasset

and M. Cheret, the one seems


inspiration
in

have found his

medioeval

cathedral,

and the
richly

other

in

Japanese

theatre.

In

the

polychromatic design M. Auriol has made for

M. Octave Uzanne's
philes,"

"

Contes pour

les

Bibliois

perhaps the
rigidity
of in

first

thing to strike us

certain

the
"

reading figures

who

pass
In
tion

before

us

stained-glass

attitudes."

the

equally

unusual

and

effective

decora-

M. Carloz Schwabe devised


ecclesiastical
tale,
"

for

M. Emile

Zola's

Le Reve," probably
else
is

what

we

note

before
of

anything
the

the
its

strange
elaborate

complication

design

and

symbolism.
I

Of M. Steinlen
but none
the less
of

know no

pictorial

poster;

is

he the author of two of

the most novel

recent
of

French book-covers.
M.
Aristide

One

is

for

book

Bruant's
of

unconventional

and unspeakable songs

the

^kfa UT

'J^cidfr
r,.BlARDOT
EdiLeur,

22.Pla.edela

^^WM
i^deleine.
PtfJS

DESIGNED BY WILLETTE.

Bookbindings Old and New.


Paris
a
file

259
of

streets,

"

Dans

la

Rue."

It

consists

of

sandwichmen,
old
fellow

beginning
(on

with

weather-worn

the

front),

and

extending (around the back) out into the gaslit

darkness of a
other was

damp and
for

wintry boulevard.

The

made

one of M. Jules Moiyear-books,


the
"

naux's

humorous

legal

Les Tri-

bunaux

Comiques."

Here

artist

makes

a clever and novel combination of

figures col-

oured naturally, with solid silhouettes extending in panoramic procession


of the

around the back

volume.

Less

unexpected

are

two

other

French
Full
of

paper-covers
character
side
of
is

herewith
that

reproduced.

which appears on
an

the
of

out-

" Bric-a-Brac,"

album

comic

sketches by that delightful pictorial humourist,


the

Franco-Russian
Pleasantly
flavour
of

who
the

calls
is

himself
the

Caran

d'Ache.
century

rococo

eighteenth

design with which

M.

Louis Morin has adorned the cover of a recent


illustrated edition of Gautier's " Petit
la

Chien de

Marquise."

One

of

the

most

amusing

of

M. Cheret's

26o
covers
is

Bookbindings Old and New.

that prepared for the illustrated cata"


is

logue of the
in

Exposition des Arts Incoherents,"


as
artistic

1886;

it

and as incoherent as

any

of the

studio jokes which

may have

b-een

AceuM

Q^^e'^o,

Designed by Caran d'Ache.

Paris

E. Plon Nourrit

&

Co.

shown
worthy

in the exhibition
is

itself.

Especially notethe pictures

the

humour with which

on both the sides and the back are combined

and yet kept separate.

Mr. Harry Furniss con-

Designed by Carioz Schwabe.

Paris

E,

Flammarion.

261

Bookbindings Old and, New.


fined his design for

263

British
"

pamphlet about
of

the

"

Pictures

of

1891

to

the front

the

wrapper, which had for

its

centre a palette with

portraits of the best-known artists of

London.

,55

P^w^^,^.^c^^m:^j^^

W^'^^X

YfV^^^^^l
,^eiUQ
\
^
C.

i;r

,.

dc

la

Marquisc..-,^^;"

:^^,..:

,/^

Designed by Louis Morin.

Paris

L.

Conquet.

III.

BRITISH AND- AMERICAN PAPER-COVERS.

Covers

of exhibition catalogues of

seem

closely

akin to covers

magazines,
while

except
the

that
latter

the
are

former

may be

sportive

TyPCENTURTI
ILLUSTRATED

MAGAZIN

mONTHLY^

DESIGNED BY ELIHU VEDDER.

condemned
their longer
artists of

to greater seriousness

by reason

of

permanence.

Many
cover

of the leading

the

day have designed wrappers for

magazines.

The former
264

of

The

Ccu-

Bookbindings Old and New.

265

tury was invented by Mr. Stanford White, and

redrawn by Mr. Elihu Vedder, and the present


cover was devised by Mr. Stanford White
of the
;

that

new Scribners

is

by Mr. Stanford White

that of the English Ilhistrated

Magazine

is

by

Mr. Walter Crane.

Messrs.

Abbey and Parsons

THE CENTURY
ILLUSTRATED

MONTHLY

MAGAZINE
r

i^

%
'4

DESIGNED BY STANFORD WHITE.

prepared the cover for the

British

edition

of

Harpers

to

my mind

far

more appropriate

than the cover of the American edition, a reminiscence of

the old Bentleys

Miscellany.

Mr.

Francis
for the

Lathrop drew a dignified cover-design


dead and gone Majihattan
;

and M. Luc

Olivier
for

Merson made
equally

a design equally dignified

the

defunct

Paris

Ilhistre.

Mr.

266

Boo/cbindiiio-s

Old and New.


for

Bertram Goodhue's

wrapper
its

his

quarterly
of
is

Knight Errant^ with


"

vague suggestion

Childe

Roland

to the

Dark Tower came,"

worthy to be compared with the Centitry Guild

Hoddy-Horse

also

the

organ

of

authors and

^^ne-CnGLISH-

fiLUSTRflTGD

DESIGNED BY WALTER CRANE.

artists

dissatisfied

with their environment and

with their epoch.


of the covers

To

be noted also are certain


for the

made by Mr, W. H. Bradley


to

Chicago Inland Printer ; and not

be omitted

Bookbindings Old and New.


is

267

the graceful and classic design by

Mr. Will

H.
"

Low now
That there
is

seen on the Bookbuyer,


is

a character in

American
I

desis^n

which

hardening into

style,

think every

ILLUSTRATED^ieOPAGES^ONE SHILLING

HARjPEICS

AONTHLT

yVGAZINE
JAMES
R. OSGOOD, M^ILVAINE & COMFANY. 4S. ALBEMARLE STREET. LONDON. W. HARPER&BR0THER5, E?ANJ{L1N SQUAEE. N EW YOK K
.

LONDON

OTFICE.

4SAIBEMaKLE JSTREET.V.

one who has had much


designers
the
chief
will

to

do with American
the

agree,"

wrote

lady

who
a

is

of
;

the

Associated
Mrs.

Artists,

few
to

years

ago

and

Wheeler

went on

268
declare

Bookbindings Old and New.


that
this

American

style
*'
:

seems

to

possess three important qualities


lute
art
;

First, abso-

fidelity

and

truth,

as

shown
line,

in

Japanese
perhaps

second,

grace

of

which

comes from
Renascence
viduality
of
;

familiarity

with

the forms

of

the
indi-

and

third,

imagination,
In
its

or

treatment.''

own way
felt

the

American

pictorial

poster

has

the

inliu-

Bookbindings Old and New.


ence of
be
called
this

269
it

forward movement
bear
witness
in

and

can
Mrs.

to

behalf of

Wheeler's declaration, just as her own embroideries

and

textiles

can,

or

the

La Farge and

Tiffany stained glass, or any other latter day

DESIGNED BY WILL

H.

LOW.

development
people.

of the art instinct of the

American

A
of

habit

of
its

the

German

periodical

Dahcim
gives
fresh-

changing

cover with every

issue,

the outside of this publication a certain

270

B00 kb hidings

Old and New.

ness not always to be discovered on the inside.

The

habit has been adopted also by the French

monthly

Figaro

Illuslre,

which

reproduces

polychromatically a water-colour drawing of one


MARCH. 1894 iii@@iti^^-siii^3i^siii@iiieiiieeiiis-

riE n/iRv/iRD

GR71DU71TES

Vol. 2

-MQ.7

PU5USnEDDY The n ARVARD G R ADU ATCS

Aagazinc -Association
6BEACON St Boston Aass.

or another of the brilliant French painters


the day.

of

Perhaps the monthly change

of the

design allows the paper-cover to serve also as


a pictorial poster to draw the attention of those

who

pass by the

stall

on which

it

is

exposed

Bookbindings Old and New.


to

271

the appearance

of

the

new number.
acquired
Joiirnal,

One
same

American
habit,
T/ic

periodical

has

the

Ladies'
its

Home
broad

which has

reproduced on

front

page drawings
artists

by most
black

of

the

leading

American

in

and white.
former
cover
of
St.

A
dren's

Nicholas,

the

chil-

magazine, was designed by Mr. Walter

Crane, to

whom,
of

for that

and

for other things,


is

the gratitude
Its

the

nursery

forever

due.

present

cover was drawn

by

Mr.

Harold

B.
in
"

Sherwin.
his
"

When

Robert
of

Louis Stevenson,
Verses,"
tells

Child's

Garden

sings

of

Picture Books in Winter," he


All the pretty things put

us that

by

Wait upon the children's eye,


Sheep and shepherds,
trees

and crooks.

In the picture story-books.

We may
Seas and

see

how

all

things are,
far.

cities,

near and
fairies'

And

the flying

looks.

In the picture story-books.

But these illuminated horn-books, these tiny

tomes

of

youthful

joy,

arc the

guerdon

of

tlie

272

Bookbindings Old and New.


the present.

children of

The
"

children

of

the

past

knew
"

them

not.

The

New England
of
"

Primer

had a cover
as
as

of the

utmost typographic
vain
itself.

severity,

dignified

and as scornful

delights

the

"

Bay

Psalm

Book

Learning was not made alluring for the sons


of

the
I

Pilgrim

Fathers,

nor for their grand-

sons.

doubt
have

not

that

Jonathan
"

Edwards
without

would
Tears
"

denounced
and

Readinsf O

as a pestilent
of

irreligious work.

Yet a score
metaphysician
sician tion
of

years
born,

before

the

American
"

was

French metaphyEduca-

had published a book on the

Daughters," in which he advised that


to

the

young be taught
so
that

read in cheerful fairy

tales,

the

labour

may

be lightened.

Fenelon even ordered that a well-bound book


be given to the child

a
the

book with

gilt

edges
the

and

fine

illustrations.

But the

treatise of

Archbishop
nally
of

of

Cambrai had been written


friends

origi-

for

his

Duke and Duchess


in

Beauvillier;
rich

and onlv
the

the

households of
gratified
gilt

the

could
"

children

be

and

incited

by

well-bound

books with

edges

and

fine engravings."

A-BOOK-GF-OLD-p.MYnE5'Vv/ITH-NEWDKE5SES''

^^-Aa/ALTER: CRANE ^

THE-

MUSIC -BY -THE- EARLIEST- MASTEKS'

ned by Walter Crane.

By permission

of

Edmund

Evans.

London

George Rutledgo

it

bons.

273

FOES
IN

AMBUSH
,^tAPT.

CHARLES KINO

Designed by R.

L.

M. Camden.

Published by J. B. Lippincott Co.

"FOES IN AMBUSH," HY KING.

"

Bookbindings Old and New.


For
the

277

most
the

part

the Httle

volumes preof

pared for

use

and behoof

the

young
than

were but shabby things, often


chap-books.
"

httle better

The
a

first "

edition
if

of

Goldsmith's
it

Goody Two Shoes


s

smith

of

surety
is

indeed

be

Gold-

rudely manufactured;
for

and so were most books


within
a

the

young
ago.

until

quarter

of
;

century

They

were

vilely

illustrated

and they had coloured

covers crude and violent in outline and in tint

Then -it was


tion

in

1865

Mr.
Evans,

Walter Crane
in associa-

began designing children's toy-books


with

Mr.

Edmund
In

engraver and

colour-printer.
Little

1870 was published "This


Market,"
its
flat,

Pig went to
outlines,
its

with

its

strong,
colours,

definite

and

bright

and with

cover as seemly, as decorous, and

as decorative as

any baby, however

fastidious,

might wish.

In

1875 began another series of

eight larger toy-books, with a uniform wrapper;

among
and an
1876,

these
"

were

"

Beauty and

the

Beast
in

Alphabet

of

Old Friends."

Then,
in

came "The Baby's Opera," and


Baby's

1879

"The

Bouquet,"

and

in

1886

"The

2/8
Baby's

Bookbindings Old and New.

Own ^sop,"
mounted
in

all

attired

in

printed

paper-covers

on

pasteboard,

most

harmonious

colour and inventive in design.

And
the

all

these

books

and

many more were


the

devised by Mr. Crane not for


rich
only,
of

children of
of

not

for

the

daughters

the

Duchess
of

Beauvillier,

but for the

children
it

the

poor,
be,

able

to

pay only a sixpence,


of

might
Hbrary.

for

the

beginning

the

baby's

After Mr. Crane had shown

the w^ay,
in

Miss
footlittle

Kate Greenaway began


steps with

to

follow

his for

her exquisite

little

books

people;
cott,

and so did the


his

late

Randolph CaldeIt

with

more robust
Caldecott

drawinsr.

was
of

in

1878

that

published

the

first

his

picture-books
;

"The

House
Fourteen
years,

that

Jack

Built "

and
"

in

the

same year came out the more


ap-

second
peared
"

John
the

Gilpin."

in

next seven

ending with

The Great Panjandrum


1885.
I^

Himself," which bore


in
first "

the date of

"^^'^s

1879 that
of

Miss

Greenaway published the


books,
the

her picture-

well-known

Kate

Greenaway 's

ONE SHILLING

Designed by Walter Crane.

Published by George Allen.


"

SPENSER'S

FAERIE QUEENE."
281

Bookbindings Old and New,


Little

283
in

Folks'

Painting
also her

Book
"

"

and
the

the

same year came


"

Under

Window."
"

The Kate Greenaway


date
of

Birthday- Book

bears

the

1880,

and the "Mother Goose"

ajDpeared the year after.


I

am under

the

impression

that

it

is

to

study of

Miss Greenaway's simple and quaint

drawings that M. Boutet de


inspiration
for

Monvel owes
picture-books

his
for

the

French

children
recently.

that

he

has

published in Paris more


is

Perhaps
artist

this

the

first

time

any

British

has

influenced

Frenchman
rediscovered

since

the

Fontainebleau

school

landscape in the paintings of Constable.


I

have been able


field

to give but a hasty glance


is

over a

where there

much
but
I

to

be gleaned
I

by the patient

labourer;

trust

have
is

succeeded in suggesting that the paper-cover


not
a

thing to
beauty,

be despised, that

it

may be

thing of
of

and that
of

it

may

be a thing

value.
:

One word
the
is

warning,

and

have

done
even

never destroy the paper-cover of a book,


of
least

important
integral

pamphlet.
of

The
book

integument

an

part

the

284
and
cover,
if

Bookbindings Old and New.


the

book

is

worth keeping, so
in always.

is

its

which shoukl be bound

The
other

wrapper may contain

advertisements

or

TESATRE DELA RENAISSAVCE

DESIGNED BY BOUTET DE MONVEL.

information, or

it

may have
you

a portrait or

some

other illustration not contained within the book


itself
;

and

then

if

remove the wrapper

Design-jJ L/

ij

L.aii^.

Lundun

George Rutleclge

Si

Sons.

285

Bookbindings Old and Neiv.


your book
will

287
always

never be perfect.
;

It will

be short of something
tive in

it

will

always be defecit

and incomplete, even though


a

should
of

be
a

the binding of

Trautz-Bauzonnet or

Cobden-Sanderson.

THE GROLIER CLUB OF

NEW

YORK.

THE GROLIER CLUB OF

NEW

YORK.

I.

NEW YORK AND


Once upon
a

ITS CLUBS.

time

M. Francisque Sarcey,

wishing to express his abhorrent contempt for


a poor play, doubted whether
it

would please

even the inhabitants of Carpentras or of

New

York.
test

think

we New Yorkers may

fairly pro-

against this

likening of our fellow-citizens


Boeotia of France, even
call

to the

dwellers in the

though we do not dare to

our city the

Athens

of

America.
as
to

In

the

noisy
literary

and

futile

discussion

the

future

capital

of

these United

States,

one agreement was clear


this

above the din, that


yet such

country

had

not

as

focus

of

intellectual,

political,

and
days

material

activity

as

London was
291

in

the

292
of

Bookbindings Old and New.


Queen
Elizabeth
;

and

to

the

want
of

of

one such here


"

Lowell attributed

much
of

the

backwardness

and provincialism

our own

literature."

Although there
trifugal

is,

very fortunately,

cen-

tendency

in

our
in

system
the

of

politics

and education, aiding


literary centres

starting

of little

here and there throughout the


I

land,

it

is

clear also,

think, that there

is

quite

as strong

centripetal
of

tendency towards the


portion
of

concentration
lectual,

large

the
of

intel-

material,

and
in

political

activity of

the

United States here

the city
if

New
and
of

York.

And

it

will

be well for us
not

the

intellectual

activities

are

pushed

aside
stress

thrust

under by the overmastering


or political activities.

material

The

fact that

most

of the leading in

American
bear

publishing houses are

New York may

witness chiefly perhaps to the material activity


of the city; but

the fact that most of the best

magazines
issue

and reviews (weekly

and
the

monthly)
exhibitions

hence,
sales
of

and that most


pictures
are

of

and

held

here,

goes

to

Bookbindings Old and New.


show
that

293
is

the

intellectual
is

movement

not

sluggish.

This movement

strengthened and
of

sustained
all

by many clubs
and
for
all

and associations

sorts
of

purposes,
in

made up
one
art.

of little

knots

men

interested

or
I

another

manifestation
refer
to

of literature

or

need not

the Authors Club,

housed for several


Fencers'
in

years,

oddly enough, over the

Club,

and having so many members


it

common

with

that the fighting editor

was no myth and the

quarrels of authors under this roof were briefer

and more pointed and

less
I

acrimonious than

those recorded by Disraeli.

need do no more

than note the disputatious Nineteenth Century

Club;

the venerable
;

Century and the revived


;

University Clubs

the Tile Club


;

the kindred

Salmagundi and Kit-Cat Clubs


Club

the old Greek the

and

the

new Library Club;

Archiof

tectural

League; the Aldine Club, composed


;

the
(the
tiful

men who make books


Garrick Club of

and The Players


its

New

York), with
its

beau-

home

in

Gramercy Park and

fine gallery

of histrionic portraits,

both presented by Edwin


lie

Booth.

rare wealth of material will

ready

294
to the

Bookbindings Old and New.


hand
of the Dr. Francis of the twentieth

century
clubs
in
;

who may
but
I

write
if

about

old

New York
anywhere

doubt

he

shall

find

his

catalogue a more interesting association

than the Grolier.

The
choice

Grolier Club

is

a gathering of those

who
the

love books for


quality

their external
of

beauty
for

for

the

paper,

the

graceful

firmness of the type, for the even clearness of


the pressvvork, for

the

harmonious elegance
for

of

the

illustrations,

and

the
Its

decorative

skill

bestowed on the binding.


clares

constitution de-

that

" its

object

shall

be

the

literary

study and promotion of the


the

arts

pertaining to
is

production of books."

That
in

to say, the

Grolier

Club

is

interested

books
It
is

not

as

literature
art

but as w^orks of
of the

art.

with the

and mystery

book-maker, the printer,

the engraver, and the binder, and not with the


secrets
of authorship, that the

members

of the

Grolier Club concern themselves, although


of

many
litera-

them

are

scholars
are

and

students

of

ture.

They

true
;

book-lovers,

and

not

mere book-hoarders

they are

bibliophiles, not

Bookbindings Old and New.


bibliomaniacs
trinsic
;

295
its

they
not

love
for

a
its

book

for

in-

beauty,

accidental
its

rarity

they cherish a volume because of


vignettes or
it

charming

its

vigorous press-work, not because


the
"

belongs

to "

good
:

edition

the
!

one with

the two misprints


Ah,

je la tiens

Que

je suis aise

C'est bien la

bonne Edition
et seize,

Car

viola,

pages quinze

Les deux fautes d'impressoin

Qui ne sont point dans

la

mauvaise.

THE GROLIER ARMS,

II.

GROLIER HIMSELF.

The

Grolier Club

is

named

after

Jean Grolier

de Servier, Viscount d'Aguisy, Treasurer-General of France,

who was

a book-lover choosing

the best impressions of the best editions of the


best books

and having them bound by the best

binders under his

own

supervision.

Grolier was
of in

one

of

the earliest of

the great bibliophiles


first

France.

The French have always been


in the skill

their affection for choice tomes,

and they have


taste of

been foremost also


their
fully

and the

book-making.

Mr. Lang, in his delight" "

easy and learned treatise on

The

Library,"
is

has quoted Dante's reference to


called illuminating in Paris "

the art that

'onor di quell' arte


Parisi.

Ch' allumare e chiamata in

In the century and a half which elapsed be-

tween Dante's death and Grolier's birth printing


296

Bookbindings Old and New.


had been invented, and the
illuminating
art

297
is

which

called

had begun
the

to

be neglected,
of

but

without

impairing

supremacy

Paris.

Grolier was of Italian origin, and he served for


years in Italy, at Milan
first,

and then

at

Rome.

In 1534 he had been appointed

French ambas-

sador to Clement VII., and

it

was then that he

began

to collect books.

After his return to his


offices,

own country he
in

held several high


of

and he

was Treasurer-General
1565 at the

France when he died

age of eighty-six.
1675,

His library
it

remained intact until

when

was sold

and scattered.

The

researches
erudite
it

of

M. Le Roux de Lincy,
enable
us
to

Grolier's
clare that
of

biographer,

de-

was the
varieties,

library, not

of a

collector

literary

but

of

scholar

who
of

wished to
his time.

have at

hand

the

best

books

Apparently there were on Grolier's


or

shelves few

none

of

the

books which,

in

M. Alphonse Daudet's sharp phrase, are


tended
for

" in-

external

use

only."

Unlike many
the
treasures

modern
he

collectors,

Grolier

read

had

garnered;

and

their

contents

were

2gS
worthy

Bookbindings Old and New.


of

the

artistic

casing
the

he gave them.
chief scholars
;

He
his

was the comrade


time.

of

of

Erasmus praised him

and

Aldus

Manutius, the great printer, dedicated a book


to him.

friend of authors, editors,

and pub-

lisher-printers,
in

Grolier

was always very wary

his

picking of copies, and he had a proof

vision

fine

paper
for

whereon

special

imthe

pression

was made
edition did

him alone where


satisfy

common
ness.

not

his

fastidiousin

These chosen sheets were then clad


suits

leather

by the best binders


designs

of the
full

day,

who decorated them with


delightful

of

the

freedom

of the

richest period of the

Franco-Italian renascence.
It
is

small wonder that

a library called into

being with such exceeding care and so adorned

by the cunning

of

the

most adroit workmen


it

should have high repute, and that when


dispersed, a
lier's

was

hundred years and more

after Gro-

death, the separate books were eagerly purin those

chased at what

days seemed

full prices.

But

in

the

two centuries since the

sale

the

value of these volumes has been rapidly rising,

GROLIER CLUB BOOK PLATE.


299

Bookbindings Old and New.


until a single

301
for

tome has been sold by auction


dollars

nearly six thousand

this

is

the noble

copy
Paris

of

Heliodorus owned
National
Library,

by

Mr.
in

Hoe.

In

the

and

London
the posphilan-

the

British
of

Museum,
books
;

are fortunate in

session

bearing
in

Grolier's

thropic motto

and

New York

others

may

arm corum

AUTOGRAPH OF GROLIER FROM CAPELLA'S "ANTHROPOLOGY." (owned by MR. SAMUEL P. AVERY.)

be seen in the library of Columbia College and


in

the

Astor Library.
of

Not a few which


the

are

owned by members
engravings
with
ter
;

Grolier
are

Club
given
far

and
herebet-

of

some

of

these
will

and

these

plates

show
of

than

any

wandering words
the famous

mine

the

characteristics of

Grolier bindings.
reveal

But
grace

although

these

reproductions
of

the

and

the

delicacy

the

design,
of

they
gild-

cannot revive the noble richness

the

ings nor the artful contrast of the colours.

III.

THE AIMS OF THE CLUB.

The
York
is

origin

of

the

Grolier
first

Club

of

New

recorded in the

volume

of its trans-

actions.
in

A
arts

little

gathering of
into

men

interested
of

the
"

"

entering
at

the

production

books
Hoe,
to

was held
in

the

house of Mr.

Robert

Jr.,

January,
a
club,

1884.

They determined
to

organize

and

that

end

they

appointed committees to present a name and


to

prepare a constitution.

Early

in

February

the

members
that

adopted
the

constitution
of

which
are

declares

founders

the
L.

club

William L. Andrews, Theodore

De

Vinne,

Alexander
Hoe,
S.
Jr.,

W.

Drake,

Albert

Gallup,

Robert

Brayton

Ives, S.

W.

Marvin,
;

Edward
Mr.

Mead, and Arthur B. Turnure


elected
Ives,

and then

they

Mr.

Hoe,

President,

and

Brayton

Vice-President.

club

device,

including the

arms

of
302

Grolier,

was provided

THE GROLIER CLUB

BUILDING,

NEW YORK.

Bookbindings Old and New.


a
fortnight
later.

305
a

Then

the

chib,
at

having
No.
first

name,

chose

local

habitation

64

Madison Avenue, where the council


about
brief
in

met
three

the

middle

of

April
first

less

than

months

after the

conference.

There,

rooms simply and most

tastefully decorated
its

and furnished, the Grolier Club made


for a brief season
;

home

there

it

took root and flourthere


its

ished and

brought forth

fruit;

mem-

bers listened to a series of lectures as


tive

instruc-

as

they were interesting;

and there they

held separate exhibitions of etchings, of manuscripts, of original

designs for book illustration,

of bindings,

and

of early printed books.

Then
of
its

in

1886 the club moved into a house


it

own. No. 29 East 32d Street, where


for
its

had more ample accommodation

many

new members.
Romeyn,
of

The

architect,

Mr. Charles

W.
suc-

carefully considered the special needs


of this

an

association
in

sort:

that

he

ceeded

giving

the

club-house

dignified

and characteristic physiognomy

of its

own, the
enough.
dwelling

accompanying

sketch
dignified

shows

plainly

And

in
X

this

and

spacious

3o6
the

Bookbindings Old and New.


Grolier
since.

Club
Mr.

has

continued

to

prosper
in

ever

Hoe was succeeded


William

the

presidency by

Mr.

Loring Andrews

and

in

due season

Mr. Andrews was followed

by Mr, Beverly Chew.

Of the founders
book-lovers

of the club,

some were merely

from

taste

and

some

were

book-

^4

Bookbindings Old and New.


book-making, that there might
be a

307
stimulat;

ing interchange of suggestions and experiences

and also
States.

to

further

these

arts

in

the United

Although

there

are

an
a

increasing

few

in

America
they see

who know
it,

beautiful
also,

book when
!

there

are

alas

not

few

who
the

dwell in outer darkness, and in whose eyes

simple
edition
British

typographic
of

beauty of the Ameri"

can
the
to

Lowell's
of
is

Democracy," or
Lang's
"

of

edition

Mr.

Letters
ill-

Dead Authors,"
of

no better than the


the

made tawdriness
Mr.
Locker's
"

American
"

edition

of

Lyra

Elegantiarum

most

feeble attempt at bespangled splendour.

There

are

not a few,

fear

me

greatly,

who know
page,
of the

not the proper proportions of

a printed

and who do not exact that the cruel knife


reckless

and mercenary binder

shall

never shear

a hair's-breadth from width or height;

who do

not consider whether the fair white space of the


outer and lower margins shall be precisely twice
as full as

the

inner and

upper margins

and

who

take no care that the width of the page of

3o8

Bookbindings Old and New.

type shall be strictly one-half of the length of


the

diagonal

of

the

page.
niceties

There are not a


are

few to

whom

these

unknown
not
a

the

not a few in the United


in

States and

few

Great Britain.

So
first

far

as

know,

the
to

Grolier

Club

is

society

founded

unite
gratify
its

book-lovers
the

and

book-makers

and

to

needs

and
col-

wishes of both classes of


lecting

members by
of

and exhibiting the

best works

the

great artists of the past and by producing

new
best

books which
that

may
skill

serve

as

types of

the

modern

and

taste

may
Club

do.
I

This

double function of the


find in
ica

Grolier

do not

any

earlier organization either in

Amer-

or in
is

Europe.
there

Neither in England nor in

France
to this

any society exactly equivalent


club.

New York
Arts

In

London, that
Fine

useful

body the
formed

Burling-

ton

Club

was

" to

bring

together amateurs, collectors, and


ested in art
tation
;

others interfor consul-

to afford ready

means
special

between

persons
in

of

knowledge
the
fine

and experience

matters

relating to

Bookbindings Old and New.


arts;

309

and

to

provide

accommodation
works
their
in

for show-

ing and comparing rare


sion
of the

the

posses;

members and
past

friends "
it

and
held

during

the

twenty

years

has

nearly forty special exhibitions of works

of art,

and perhaps
have
the

ten

of in

these
subject

special
to

exhibitions

been

akin
of

those

held

at

rooms

the

Grolier Club.

But the Burits

lington

Fine
the

Arts
fine

Club

extends
it

interest
likely
to

over

all

arts,

and

is

as

gather
lains

and display bronzes


it

or
to

ivories, porce-

or paintings, as

is

show woodcuts,
;

etchings, or illuminated manuscripts

while the
solely to

Grolier

Club

confines

its

attention

arts pertaining to the

production of books.
des

In

Paris the
its

Societe

Amis
by

des

Livres

declares that

aim

is " to

publish books, with


their

or

without

illustration,

which

typo-

graphic execution, or by their


shall

artistic

selection,

be an encouragement to the painters and


as

to

the engravers
to

well

as

a motive of emu-

lation

the

French

printers,"

and
all

also,

" to

create a

friendly feeling
of frequent

among

bibliophiles

by means

reunions."

The

Society

31o
of

Bookbijidiiigs

Old and New.


is

the Friends of
fifty

Books

limited to a

memParis.

bership of

with an addition of

twenty-five
in

corresponding
Ladies
first

members
for

non-resident

are

eHgible

membership, and the


order
is

name on
of

the Hst in alphabetical

Madame Adam. Among the other members are the Duke d'Aumale, M. Henri
that
Beraldi,

M.

Henri

Houssaye,
Paillet,

M.

Auguste

Laugel, M.
talis,

Eugene

Baron Roger Por-

and M. Octave Uzanne.

The sumptuous
Books

tomes prepared with loving care and untiring


toil

by the Society

of

the

Friends

of

are

known

to

all

bibliophiles

through the

world as examples of the highest endeavour of


the art of book-making in France to-day.

The Burlington Fine


publish

Arts
a few

Club
of
its

does

not

books, and only

valuable

exhibitions are devoted to the arts pertaining to

the

making

of

books.

The

Societe

des

Amis
no
ex-

des Livres publishes books and


hibitions.
qualities
to

holds

The
be

Grolier

Club unites the three


in

found

differing

degrees

in
it

one or the other of these


has frequent

European clubs:
which
its

meetings

at

members

Bookbindings Old and New.

31
it

may

talk

shop

and
it

free

their souls

gives
a

exhibitions;

and

prints

books.
that

(I

open

parenthesis

here to
little

note

there was

once

an unpretending
in

Book

Fellows' Club here

New York
;

which printed a tiny tome now


to record that there
is

and again
club in

and

a dining

London

called the

Sette of

Odde

Vol-

umes, for

whom

few pretty books

of a personal

interest

and

of

mostly varying value


But
neither
of

have

already

been

printed.

these can fairly be called a rival of the Grolier


Club.)
I

am

forced to consider the meetings of the


it

Grolier Club before discussing the books


published,

has

because

certain

of

its

publications

have had a previous existence as lectures delivered

before

the

members.
first

During

the

winter of 1884-85, the


the

whole season that


of
its

club

was

in

full

possession

rooms,

Mr. Theodore L.
toric

De Vinne lectured on " HisPrinting-Types," Mr. Hoe on " BookbindConsidered,"

ing

Artistically

and

Mr.

Will-

iam
In

Matthews
1885-86

on

"

Practical

Bookbinding."
lectured

Professor

Chandler

on

312
"

Bookbindings Old and New.


Processes,"

Photo-Mechanical
"

Mr.

Elbridge

Kingsley on
Professor

Modern Wood-Engraving," and


"

Knapp on

Thierry Martens and the


In
"

early Spanish

Press."

1886-87

Mr.

W.
of

J.

Linton spoke on the

Wood-Engravers

the

XVth
sande,"

and XVIth Centuries," Professor R. R.


"

Rice on

The Etchings
Brayton
Mr.
In

of

Storm van's Graveon


"

Mr.

Ives

Early

Printed
"

Books," and
ental Books."

Heromich Shugio

on

Oridis-

1887-88 Professor West

cussed the

"

Philobiblon," Professor Russell Stur'

gis analyzed " Turner's

Liber Studiorum,'
"

"

and

Mr.

W. Lewis

Eraser considered
of

Nearly
in

Two

Hundred Years
ica."

Book-illustrating

Amerlectured

In 1888-89 Mr. George

Hannah

on

"

Early Printed Books relating to America,"

and Mr. H. Mansfield on "The Etched


of

Alphonse

Legros."
"

In

1890

Mr.

Work W. C.

Prime lectured on
raries"; and in

Diirer and his

Contempo-

1891
a

Mr. H. Carrington Bolton


collection
subjects.
of

discoursed

upon

books
1892

on
Mr.

alchemy and kindred


Frederick
"

In

Keppel

delivered
of

an

address
"
;

on
in

Some

Masterpieces

Engraving

and

Bookbindings Old and New.

31

1893 Mr. Charles R. Hildebiirn considered the


career
the
of
"

Wilham

Bradford,

first

printer

in
J.

Middle

Colonies."

And
a

in

1894

Mr.
"

Wells

Champney
of

read

paper

on

Pastels

and

Pastellists."

The most
preceded

these

lectures

accompanied or
of

special

exhibitions
of the

the
of the
of

objects

under discussion or
eulogized.

works

master
other
ad-

There were any number


in

exhibitions

connection with which


delivered
prints,
;

no

dresses

were

indeed
portraits,

these
of of

special

exhibitions of
of
fans,

of

drawings,
pictorial

of

early
pastels,

printed
of

books,

posters,

of

etchings
too

and bookbindto

ings

old

and new are

many

be

here

catalogued in detail as they deserve.

IV.

THE PUBLICATIONS OF THE GROLIER CLUB.

The

first

publication was aptly chosen

it

was

a reprint

of "

Decree

of

Starre-Chamber, con-

cerning printing, made the eleventh day of July


last past.

1637."

By declaring

it

unlawful, with-

out special authorization, to make, buy, or keep


types
or presses, or to practise the trade of
publisher, or
bookseller,

printer,

the

men who
print-

were misruling England sought to render


ing too
full

of

risk

to

be profitable, and they

hoped thus

to prevent the expression of the dis-

content with which the people were boiling.


it

As
a

is

neatly put in Mr.

De

Vinne's vigorous and


:

lucid
little

preface to
hissing of

this

reprint

"

Annoyed by
all

steam, they closed

the valves
fires

and

outlets,

but did not draw or deaden the

which made the steam.


gratified with

They

sat

down

in peace,

their work, just before the explo-

sion which destroyed

them and
314

their privileges."

DECREE
OF

Starre-Chamber,

CONCERNING
Printing,
S^Iade the eletienth day of July
lajl pajl.

1637.

^Imprinted

at

London by

'Rpbcrt "Barker,

Printer to the Kings motl Excellent Maieftie And by the Affignes


:

of

Mb

BiU.

1637.

REDUCED FACSIMILE (IF TITLE-PAGE OF GROLIER CLUB EDmON OF "A DECREE OF STARRE-CHAMBER, CONCERNING PRINTING."

Bookbindings Old and New.


This decree was issued
the Court of Star
in
in

31

1637

four years later


;

Chamber was aboHshed


was
beheaded.
of

and

1649

King

Charles
is

The
book-

reprinted decree

an admirable piece
is

making.
with

The
Dutch
the

type

an old style great primer,


italic

Dutch
is

capitals for the


also, as

letter.
first

The
city

paper
tion

becomes the
bibliophiles

publica-

of

organized

of

the

which was once


is

New Amsterdam.
in

of

Japanese paper, folded


Paris
it

the

The cover style made


having

popular in
imprinted on

by M. Jouaust, and

in gold

a facsimile of a book-

cover designed by Roger Payne.

The

second

publication
its

is

less
is

interesting

because the reason of


It is

choice

not apparent.

a reprint of

Edward

Fitzgerald's " Rubaiyat


It
is

of
"

Omar Khayyam."
of
it

not

unlike

the

Decree

Starre-Chamber
is

" in

make-up,

differ-

ing chiefly in that

on Japanese paper and


in colours

adorned with head-bands printed


Persian designs.
ental model,
tiful
its

from

The

cover, also

from an OriBeau-

was

also printed in colours.


is,

as this

book

it

is

less

satisfactory than

predecessor, because there was no imperative

3 $
1

Bookbindings Old and New.


it.

need for

Although Oriental
is

art in verse

and

decoration

profoundly suggestive, the issuing

of yet another

new
it

edition of

the " Rubaiyat,"


set-

however worthy
ting,

may

be of the noblest
of

might seem rather the task

British

Burlington Fine Arts Club than of an American

tv

Bookbindings Old and New.

No

better

choice

could

the

GroHcr
its

Chib
third
"

have made than the work selected as


publication.

This

is

Washington

Irving's

His-

tory of

New
to

York, from the Beginning of the

World

the

End
of

of

the

Dutch Dynasty, by
Here was a most
of

Diedrich

Knickerbocker."
the

happy solution
the claims of

claims

locality

and
the

literature.

Most

fitly

could

HEAD-PIECE FROM GROLIER CLUB EDITION OF TORY OF NEW YORK.' " (DRAWN BY HOWARD

" KNICKERBOCKER'S

'

HIS-

PYLE.)

Grolier Club bend


tion

its

energies to
of

the prepara-

and
of

production
a

rich

and

worthy
by
the
for-

edition

book

about

New York
of

greatest of

New York

authors.

By good
the

tune the humorous

chronicle

learned

and gentle Dutch antiquary lends


to

itself easily
;

abundant

illustration

and decoration by the


late

and
Died-

of the opportunities offered

2,20
rich

Bookbindings Old and New.


Knickerbocker
the

present

GroHer Club
better piece

has been swift to avail


of

itself.

No
seems

book-making has

ever
It
"

been

sent forth
to

by
that

an American publisher.
this

me
'

cheerful

issue
'

of
"
is

Knickerbocker's
to stand

His-

tory of

New York

worthy
of

beside

M. Conquet's noble editions

Stendhal's two

HEAD-PIECE FROM GROI.IER CLUB EDITION OF LOG-BOOK "KNICKERBOCKER'S 'HISTORY OF NEW YORK.'" (DRAWN BY W. H.
NOAH'S
DRAKE.)

great novels,

"

Le Rouge
"

et le

Noir" and

"La
that

Chartreuse de Parme

the
I

models of modern
the
best

book-making,

and

altogether
skill

French
in
this

taste

and French
art.

can

accomplish
that
to

difficult

do

not

say
equal
the

the

American
French
;

volumes

are
for

quite

the

they lack,

one

thing,

tender

Bookbindings Old and New.


and
brilliant

321
as

etchings

which
of

serve

headstories;
refine-

pieces

for every chapter

Stendhal's
the
final

and

again, they are


of

without
title

ment

the

recurring

water-marked

in

the lower margins

of the

page.
all

Perhaps the

American books have


and easy grace
of

not

the soft richness

M. Conquet's masterpieces,

but yet they brave the comparison boldly.

From
Dutch

cover to core

there

is

delightfully

flavour in these two comely tomes.

The
in

boards in which
orange,
as
befits

they
the

are

bound
of
fall

are

clad

garb

the
of
is

only true

account of the decline and


in

Dutch
Dutch
of
;

rule

America.
too,

The paper
are

within

and

Dutch,

the

types,

facsimile

those
five

used by Elzevir at Leyden in 1659


years
before
of

only

change
Colonel
surprise,

New Amsterdam experienced a heart and became New York, after


Peter
city.

Nichols, taking

Stuyvesant by

had captured the


the

The

frontis-

pieces

to

two volumes are etchings from


Battery in 1670," and

drawings of

"The

"The
in

Governor's Representative," by Mr. George H,

Boughton, who

was once a school boy

the

322
Aurania
ings

Bookbindings Old and New.


of

the

Dutch.
of
"

The

other

two etch-

are

views

Fort

New Amsterdam,
in

1651," and of
last

"New Amsterdam
The

1656," this

being a reproduction

of the earhest
half-titles,

known
them

print of

New

York.
initial

head-bands,
of

tail-pieces

and

letters
all

are
of

some

from Dutch models, and


pleasantly

them are most


of

Dutch
Mr.

in

spirit;

two
Pyle,

them were
rest
It

designed by

Howard
Mr.
note
that

and the
Drake.

were

drawn

by

Will

H.

remains only to

the original

manu-

script of Irving's careful


of

and elaborate revision

"Knickerbocker's
a

'

History of
of

New York'"
of this

is

now owned by

member

the Grolier Club,


to indi-

and that advantage was taken


cate in an appendix the

minor and yet always


suppressions
of

interesting

changes

and

the

author.

Except a useful pamphlet

of "

Transactions

"

the "Knickerbocker's 'History of

New York'"
Grolier

was the only publication


during the season
next
of

of

the

Club

18S5-86; and during the


confined
the
itself

winter
of

the

club
of

to

the

printing

certain

lectures

delivered

Bookbindings Old and New.


before the
it.

323

The

first

of

these

had
on

been by
"

President,

Mr.

Robert

Hoe,
it

Bookfirst

binding as a Fine Art," and


to

was the

appear as a book.
the
ckib,

When
of

Mr.
his

Hoe spoke
remarks by
of

before

he

illustrated

specimens of the work


noted binders,
all

many

the

most

selected from his

own

library,

photographs

of

which were thrown on a screen


;

by the stereopticon
is

and the published lecture


by sixty-three
"

made more

valuable
" of

Bier-

stadt artotypes

these bindings of Mr. Hoe's.


reveal

Although the
richness
of

plates

the

extraordinary

the

lecturer's

collection,
of

not

all

the

examples
doubt,

were

worthy

reproduction

and, no

more

characteristic illustrations
call

might have been procured had a


for

been made from other

the

best

specimens obtainable

members

of the club.

The second
ing-Types,"

lecture

was on

"

Historic
L.

Print-

by
in

Mr.

Theodore
1885,
it

De

Vinne.

Delivered

January,

was published

by the

Grolier

Club with additions and with

new
Mr.

illustrations.

As
"

all

know who have


of

read

De

Vinne's

Invention

Printing,"

he

324
is

Bookb'uidiiigs

Old and New.


own
craft,

a master not only of his

but also

of the

more arduous
Mr.

art

and mystery
style

of authoris

ship.

De Vinnes
as

as a writer

as

clear
as
is

and
his

simple, as
as
of

firm

and as vigorous,
His wide
has

press-work

a
the

printer.

and deep knowledge


so

subject
it

been

thoroughly digested and


I

is

so pleasantly

presented, that

think a merely casual reader,


to type-setting

having a Gallio-like indifference

and type-founding, would


at the
It

find his interest aroused

beginning
is

of

Mr.

De

Vinne's essay.
that

the

more fortunate

the

subject

should have fallen into hands so accomplished,


as
tion,

there
"

is,

so

we

read

in

the

introduc-

no

popular
gives

treatise

about

book-types

nothing

that

us

in

succinct

and

con-

nected form

information about their designers


tells

and makers, and that

us
It

why
is

styles

once
of

popular are now- obsolete."

the

want

such a treatise that Mr.


all
is

De Vinne
is.

has
the

filled,

too
his

brief

as

his

paper
it

As

author
that
is

own

printer,
in

is

needless
lecture

to

say

the

book

which

the

appears

masterpiece

of

American book-making, a mar-

Bookbindings Old and New.


vel of

325

the
the

most
type,

admirable
the

simplicity.

The
and

paper,

press-work,

the

size

the shape of the page, the adroit arrangement


of the

marginal notes, the due subordination of


the

the

foot-notes,

ample and properly propor-

tioned

margins,

even the novel

and dignified

binding
of a

all

these testify to the guiding touch


craft.

master of the
1888
the

In

club

published,

"as a
it,

sort

of

New Year
edition
tale,
"

book," so a report calls


the
late

a dainty

of

Charles

Reade's histrionic
suggesting
in
its

Peg

Wofifington,"

mechanical execution the


century

book-making
Mistress

of

the

when
but
story

the

lovely
little

Margaret

flourished.

The two
one
should

tomes

were pretty

enough,
British

wonders
be

exactly

why

this

chosen for reproducIn

tion

by an American
of

club.

1889 the

first

book
it

the

year was far more

appropriate;

was

Mr.

De

Vinne's delightful

account of

the

Plantin

printing-house, reprinted

from the
all

Cc7itury magazine with additions and notes,

Mr. Pennell's picturesque sketches being printed


in

varying

tints.

326

Bookbindings Old and New.


publication of the club,

The most important


even

more
is

important
the
"

than
"

the
of

"

Knicker-

bocker,"

Philobiblon

Richard de
holds
British

Bury,

The good

Bishop

of

perhaps the foremost place

Durham among all

ejr

(j^timis CoUtcttus 3Rtcrasuit

Version? SLnglicanetnon ct^rolts


gomntis ^[iJnotationtliusciUE 9[ujrit

?>
in

9[nt>rtaB Jflfintns IBIlcst -cr

Collfgio ^rincrtoniff professor

ti $ars $rftna

q Crjrttis

||

REDUCED FACSIMILE OF TITLE-PAGE OF GROLIER


OF " PHILOBIBLON."

CLUl!

LATIN EDITION

book-lovers, just as

Grolier holds the foremost

place

among
fit

all

French

book-lovers

and

it

was most
of

and appropriate that a company


for the

American book-lovers named

French-

Bookbindings Old and New.

327

man
was

should

choose for

reverent

reproduction

the masterpiece of the

Enghshman.
laborious
;

The
it

task

honourable

but

and

was

undertaken not lightly or


but
with
courage,

in a spirit of levity,

determination,

and

fore-

'

bomiiii fliratbi be aiunctrbilc tosmnninati

\>z

aSutp

-quoitbam

iCfijttopi SI>undmniiBii#.
i.stc

dTomjifauji-

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in

inmima no^tro

bc^

<o-2lluIiflaiibt tiirc;Shna quarto bic

3rinimru-53>

">- nirno Domini miflc;$imo trctntfcsriinii -** ^-*=- nuabniffcflimo nunito, ittatiX nosT; -^-^

^--=

as

quhuiimscsfimo ortabo
tompirto,

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REDUCED FACSIMILE OF LAST PAGE OF GROLIER CLUB LATIN EDITION


OF " PHILOBIBLON."

thought.
fided
to

The mechanical
Mr.

execution was con-

De Vinne, than whom no one was worthier. The literary labour was undertaken by Professor Andrew Fleming West

328
of

Bookbindings Old and New.

Princeton,

who had

ah-eady lectured
to edit.

before

the club
fessor
dutiful

upon the book he was


not
of

Proof

West shrunk
comparison
that

from

the

toil

manuscripts
text

and

early
estab-

editions
lished
;

a
this

proper

might be

and

proper
the

text,

most
sent

devoutly
forth
as

amended and
the
first

revised,

club

volume.

In the second was contained

Professor

West's

sturdy

and

precise

render-

ing of the
lish.

original

Latin

into our later

Engby

These

two

volumes,

long
of

delayed
the
in

the

ardent and
followed
to

arduous labours

editor,

were

by

third

volume

which

was
of

be found an introduction, an account


author,

the

and such notes as were need-

ful for

the elucidation of the work.


edition was limited to two

The

hundred and

ninety-seven copies on paper and three on vel-

lum, one

of

which

latter

is

properly

reserved
are

for the library of

the

club.

The volumes
while

clad in pure

vellum
the

covers,

stamped with the


within

gold
there

seal
is

of

good

bishop,

a novel lining-paper, rich in colour and


in

congruent

design.

The form

is

small

Bookbindings Old and New.


quarto,
httle

329
and
a

with

page

six

inches

wide

less

than eight inches long.


"

The

paper,

a so-called

white antique,"

is

American handMr.

made by
than any
paper.

the

Brown
it

Company, and
whiter, clearer,

De

Vinne regards

as

and better
jDrinting

English,

Dutch, or

Italian

The typography
seemly
;

is

not

merely decent
as beautiful as

and
the
it.

it

is

as exact

and

utmost

skill

and
the
text,

loving
first
is

care

could

make

The
the

type

of

volume, which
a

contains
;

Latin

pica

black-letter

the

second

volume,

which
in

contains

the

English
(not

translation,

being set
small
pica.

modern

Roman
Sir

old

style)

The
vaults

black-letter
of

types

were got
Reed's

out

of for

the

Charles

Sons
Baines

Mr.

De

Vinne

by
drives
in

Mr.
of

Talbot

Reed,
to

and

they are

punches believed
in

have been cut


of

France
century.

the

first

half

the

sixteenth
of

There

are

rubricated

initials,

full-bodied

vermilion not often seen nowadays.


head-pieces
the

There are
them, and
devised

and

tail-pieces,

some

of

more ingenious, having been

by

330
Mr. G.

Bookbindings Old and New.

W.

Edwards.
(as

There

is

a page

of

fair
is

proportion

we have

seen),

and there
there
is

type rightly adjusted thereto; and

the

very perfection
in

of

press-work, ahke
register.

impeccable

impression and in

Herein indeed

we

see the final superiority of the best

modern

printing

by improved machines
artistic

when guided
this

by a

fine

sense

such registry as
not
of

would

be

absolutely

accidental,

to

say
early

impossible,
printers.

on the

hand-presses

the

In
"

the

manufacture
"

of

this

edition
full

of

the

Philobiblon

there

was

the
of

harmony
skill,

which comes from a union


and
taste.
It
is

knowledge,
the eye, to the

a delight

to

the
of

hand, and to the mind.

At

last

book

Richard

de

Bury

had a
of

goodly

outside,

as

becomes the words


books and
a
foretaste
to

wisdom

within.
is

To
to

love

own
of

a book like this


book-lover's
this

have

the
like

heaven.
edition

To
like

study
this

a leads

book

in

an

away from

vice

and

conduces
xv.)

to

virtue.
"

Indeed we read therein (cap.


can serve both books and

that

no

man

mammon."

Bookbindings Old and New.


In

33
hundred
on
"

1889
there

in

an

edition

of

three
the

copies
"

was

published

lecture

Modern Bookbinding
Mr.
the

Practically Considered

which
before

William
club
four

Matthews
years

had

delivered

before

and

from

which more than one quotation has been taken


to

enlighten the preceding pages

of

the

pres-

ent

volume.
the

Externally

this

volume
Mr.
it

ranged

with

published lectures of
;

Hoe and
was
illus-

Mr.

De Vinne
as

and

internally

trated

Mr. Hoe's had been with abundant

photogravures.
In

1890

one

of

the

most

artistic artistic

of

the

club's publications

was

issued,

largely

because

of

its

seemly
three
"

simplicity.

This

was

an

edition
of

of

hundred and
a

twenty-five

copies

the

Areopagitica,

speech

of

Mr, John Milton, for the liberty of unlicensed


printing."

For

this

Lowell

wrote

an
of

intro-

duction,

characteristically
of

commingled
to be

wis-

dom and
In 189 1

wit

it

is

now

found in the

latest edition of his

complete works.

the chief publication was the address


"

on

"

Washington Irving

which George Will-

332

Bookbindings Old and New.


at

iam Curtis had delivered


before
in

Ashfield two years

and

which

has

since
of

been
his
fitly
"

inckided
Literary

the

posthumous volume

and Social Essays."

This was

illustrated,

and the edition was limited to three hundred

and
its

forty-four

copies.

As
of

the
its

club

increased

membership, the

size

editions

had

also to increase.

Hitherto the publications of the Grolier Club

had

been

of

two

kinds

either

they

were

lectures
w^ere

delivered

before the

members

or they

independent works which the club wished

to honour.
class,

Now

there began to appear a third


the

being the catalogues of

exhibitions

held at the club-house.

In 1891 there was pub-

lished a catalogue of engraved portraits of

the
to
of
in

most famous English


Johnson; followed
illuminated
in

writers,

from Chaucer

1892

by a catalogue
;

and painted
catalogue
of

manuscripts
original
poetical

and

1893

^^y

^
of

and and

early

editions

some

of

the

prose
to

works

of

English

writers

from

Langland

Wither.
list

In 1894 there was printed a classified

of early

American book-plates; and

in 1895

Bookbmdings Old and New.


a cataloQ^ue of books from the
libraries

333
or col-

lections of celebrated bibliophiles

and

illustrious

persons of the past, with arms or devices upon


the
bindings.

Most
with

of these lists

were
all

set off

and

enriched
of

facsimiles;
art.

and

were
to

models

the

typographic

And
of

akin

these records
the

of special exhibitions held within

club-house,

was a

volume

" Transac-

tions " published

toward the end of


history

1894

and

containing
of
its

the

of the club to the

end

first

decade.

In

this
I

summary

list

of

these

several

cata-

logues,

could not of course refer to two other

publications
of

made
"

in

the past five years.

One

them was an

original essay
of

by Mr. Moncure D.
the

Conway on
sixty copies

The Barons
were printed
of

Potomack and

the Rappahannock," of which three hundred and


in

1892.
"

The

other

was a facsimile
of

Bradford's

Laws and Acts


their

the

General

Assembly
York.

for

Majesties

Province of
1694,
of
it

New

Originally printed in
in

was reprinted by the club

an edition
just

three

hundred and twelve copies

two

centuries after the laws had been enacted.

334

Bookbindings Old and New.


other of the publications of the Grolier

Two

Club must be mentioned here,


they can
fairly

if

publications
first

be

called.

The
of

was

bronze
thorne,

medallion portrait

Nathaniel

Hawd'lll-

made

for the club

by M. Ringel

zach in 1892; and the second was an etching

by M.
"

Fran9ois
in

Flameng
Printing

of

the

picture

of at

Aldus

his

Establishment

Venice,
the

showing Grolier some


having

Bookbindings,"

original

been

painted
to

by
the

M.
club

Fran9ois

Flameng and presented


S.

by Mr.

P.

Avery

to

whom,

indeed, the
Players)

library of the Grolier (like that of the


is

indebted for

many

benefactions.

The membership
first

of the Grolier

Club was

at

limited to one
to

hundred
of

(it

has

now been
fifty

enlarged

allow

two

hundred and
its

resident members), but the editions of


lications

pub-

have

generally

somewhat
and
the

exceeded

the

smaller

number,

unfortunate
to

outsider has

sometimes

been able
aid
is

acquire
at

these
court.

treasures

by

the

of

friend

This
the

liberality

in

proper

accord

with

spirit

of

the

inscription

stamped

Bookbindings Old and New.


on
Grolier's

335
et

own

books,
forth

lo.

Grolierii

ainicorum,
to

setting
as

that

they

belonged

Grolier and his friends.


is

Surely an altruism
selfishness
of

like this
liger,

rare

as the

Sca-

who bade

his friends

buy books

for

them-

selves.

To grant
difficult

or to withhold, the question


(sqtie

is

equally

diffiailter.

When

all

book-

owners
precious
will

shall

freely

lend

and send

their

most

tomes

with

ungrudging speed, then

be the book-lover's millennium, which the


of

founding

the

Grolier
to

Club

here

in

York may haply help


in

bring to pass.

New And
for

the

meanwhile

its

members may pine

that book-man's Paradise:


There treasures bound
for

Longepierre
blue,

Keep

brilliant their

morocco
is

There Hookes'

"Amanda"
upon Peru

not rare,

Nor

early tracts
is

Racine

common

as Rotrou,
defies,

No

Shakspere Quarto search

And Caxtons grew

as blossoms grew,

Within that Book-man's Paradise.

INDEX.
Abbey, E. A.,
Aldine Press,
199, 2 '3.
5.

Bookbinding

in monasteries, 9.
at

Aguisy, Viscount of [Grolier],


iS, 22.

Bookbinding, exhibition
Grolier Club, 108.

the

dine typographic devices, 26.

Bookbinding,

forwarding,

and

A. us, 14, 76.


rating, 151.

finishing, loi.

American silversmiths' book deco- Bookbinding,


ID.

wooden

boards,

Amyot, Jacques,

48.

Armstrom
Assyrian

Miss, 242.

Arnold, Matthew, 117.


ookbinding, 6.

Bookbinding in silver, 9. Bookbinding, carved ivory, 9. Bookbinding, commercial, 182. Bookbinding, antiquity of edition
binding, 171.

Astor Library, 301.


Auriol, M., 256.

Bookbinding, technic of the


95-

craft,

Avery, S. P., 154, 215.


Badier, Florimond, 58.

Bookbinding, as
Bedford, Francis, 107, 126.

it

is

practised

to-day, 98. Bookbinding, " forwarding," 95.

Bewick, 118.

Binders of to-day, 119. Binding by machinery, 182.

Bookbinding, the "Powder," 38. Bookbinding, curiosities, 152.

Bookbinders of Great
90, 125.

Britain,

Bindings in cloth, 176.


Block design for covers, 177.
Bolton, H. Carrington, 312.

Bookbinders'

tools, 25.

Bookbinders,

modern

French,

1 22 Bookbinding in France, 89. Bookbinder as an artisan-artist, Bookbinding, early Italian, 14. Bookbinding in Venice, 18. 167. Bookbinding in Venice during Book covers in calico, 184.

fifteenth century, 75.

Bookbinding
144.

in

America, 90, 138,

Bookbinding Napoleon

in
I.,

Book of the Tile Club," 212. Book Fellows' Club, 311. Books first bound in cloth, 184. France under Books bound in sealskin, 159.
"
116.

Books
337

in

paper covers, 233.

338
Books
with
illustrated

Index.
paper Crane, Walter, 132, 237,241,277. Cruickshank's " Comic Alphaskin,

covers, 238.

Books bound
158.

in

alligator

bet," 241.
Curtis,

George William, 331.

Book-worm,

10.

Cuzin, 122.

Boone, Daniel, 160. Boughton, G. H., 200, 215.


Boule, 80.

Dana's
'*

"Two

Years," 160.

Daphnis et Chloe," 72. Boyets, the, 71. Day, Lewis F., 204. Bradley, W. H., 266. Derome, 47, 152. British and American paper Derome, the younger, 83. covers, 264. Derome, lacework borders, 85. British railway novels, 240. De Samblancx, 122. British booksellers, 194. De Thou, Jacques Auguste, 47. Burlington Fine Arts Club, 310. De Vinne, Theodore L., 323, 329.
Burton's " Book-hunter,"
Burty, Philippe, 153.
Caldecott, Randolph, 237, 278.
3.

De Vinne,
Diana of

" Plantin."

Poitiers, 54.

Dibdin, 84, 118. Didot, F., 14.

Cape, 122.

Dobson, Austin, 161.


Dubuisson, 86.
in

Caran d'Ache, 259.


Castellani,
silver,

modern workers
1 1 1

DuChaillu's ''Land of Midnight Sun," 199.

Cellini,

Benvenuto, 9, Chambolle-Duru, 122.

18.

Champney,
Charles V.,

J.

Wells, 313.

Edwards, G. W., designs book covers, 227.


Eisen, 86.

for

9.
5,

Charles IX.,

37, 53.

Cheret, Jules, 175, 245, 248, 250.

Cloth binding, 176, 184. Cloth binding for special books,


209.

Erasmus, 5. Evans, E., colour Eve, Nicolas, 57.


Eve, Clovis, 57.
" Fanfares," 57.
Ferriar, 182.

printer, 277.

Clubs of

New

York, 293.
62, 104, 129,

Cobden-Sanderson,
132. 152, 166.

Flameng, 334. Columbia College Library, 301. Fournier, Edouard, 14, 18. Conway, Moncure, D., " Barons Fox, C. J., "Speeches" bound in fox skin, 159. of Potomack," 333. Coverly, Roger de, 132. Francis L, 5, 37.

Index.
Francis
Fraser,
II., 5.

339
III., 54.

W.

Lewis, 312.

Henry Henry

IV., 53.

Furniss, Harry, 260.

Higginson, Mrs., "Princess


Java," 209.

of

Gautier's

''

Une

Nuit de Cleo-

patre," 159.

Hildeburn, C. R., 313. Hoe, Robert, 302.


Holbein's
157-

German binders in England, 147. German bookbinding, modern,


144.

"

Dance of Death,"

Gilson, finisher for William Mat-

thews, 106.
Grasset, M., 245, 248.

Gravelot, 86.

Greenaway, Kate, 278.


Grolier, 6, 17, 18, 152.

Holmes, Dr. Oliver W., 17. Horace, g. Hugo's " Napoleon le Petit," bound in morocco with the " Bee " from the throne of Napoleon III., 155. Hunt, R. M., 135.
Illuminated horn-books, 271.
Illustrated children's books, 237.
Italian

Grolier's motto, 30.

Grolier

and the Renascence,

5.

Grolier bindings, 21. Grolier bookbinding tools, 26. Grolier Club, 291. Grolier Club building, 305. Grolier Club e.xhibition of book-

bookbinding,

modern,

144.
Ives, Brayton, 312.

bindings,

T)2

121.
lec-

Jacquemart, Jules, 204.


Jansenists, 71.
Joly, 122.

Grolier Club meetings and


tures, 311.

Grolier Club, origin

of,

302.

Jones,

Grolier Club publications, 314.

Owen, ''Alhambra," bound by Matthews, 106.

Gruel and Engelmann, 122.


Gruel,
Guinti,

M. Leon,
5.

58.

Kalthoeber, 147. Keppel, F., 312.


Kingsley, Elbridge, 312.

"Guirlande de

Julie," 58.

Knapp, Professor, 312.

Hannah, G., 312. Hardy-Dumennil, Hawthorne, 334.


Heber, 182.

126.

La Farge,
Lamartine,

269.
1

17.

Lamb's
210.
Poitiers,

" Poetry

for

Children,"

Henry Henry

II.,

5,37, 54.

II.

and Diana of

Lang, Andrew, 296.


Latlnop, Francis, 265.

38.

340
Laugel.
for

Index.
Auguste, books

bound Mazarin

Library, 43.

Napoleon

I.,

117.

Mazarine, Cardinal, 66.


Medici, Cardinal de, 9.

Laurin, Marc, his motto, 33.

Lavedan, Henry, 252. Le Gascon, 47, 58, 62.


Leighton, Archibald, 187.

Merson, Luc Oliver, 265. Moinaux, Jules, 259. Molesworth, Mrs., 207.
30, 297.

Le Roux de Lincy,
Linton,

5, 17,

Monograms,

163.
de, 283.

Lewis, English bookbinder, 118.

Monvel, Boutet

W.

J.,

312.

Locker,
307-

" Lyra

Moreau, 87. Elegantiarum," Morin. Louis, 259. Morris, William, 132.


Morris, W., "
for Art,"

Longepierre, 163.
Lortic, 122.
Loti, P., 162.

Hopes and Fears bound by Cobden-

Sanderson, 138.

Louis XIL, 37. Morris, Miss May, 136. Louis XI n. bookbinders use lace- Morse, Miss Alice E., 203. makers' designs, 79.
Louis XIV., bookbinding during
his reign, 68.

Niedree, 122.

Louis XV., 72.

Nodier, Charles, 57. Norton's " Political


isms," 208.

American-

Low, Will H., 237.


Magonigle, Harold, 200.
Maioli, 47, 152.

Ogier, Guillaume, 14. " Our Grandmothers'


210.

Gowns,"

Maioli motto, 33. Mansfield, H., 312.

Margaret of Valois, 54. Marius-Michel, M.,43, 57, 122.


Martial, 9.

Padeloup,
80.

'72,

152.

Padeloup's bookbinding designs,


"

Mary

of Cleves, 54.
62, 96,

Pandectarum
43-

Juris Florentini,"

Matthews, William,
144.

143,

Parsons, Alfred, 223.


89, 117.

Matthews, W., ''Modern Book- Payne, Roger,


binding,"
etc.,

331.
to

Pennell, Joseph, 237, 242.

Matthews, W., " Matthews,

How

Work

Petit, R.. 153.

Design," 106.

Petrarch, 10.

W.,

" Bookbinding

Pictorial poster, 246.

Practically Considered," 96.

Picture-book covers in France,


251.

Matthews, Alfred, 143.

Index.
Picture posters in Italy, 249.
" Philobiblon " of

341

Richard

de
the

Scaliger, his motto, 33. Schwabe, Carloz, " Le Reve," 256.


'Sette of

Bury,
Plantin, 48.

publislied

by

Odd Volumes,"
B., 271.

311.

Grolier Club, 212, 326.


Poulet-Malassis's
153-

Sherwin, Harold
Shugio, H., 312.

" Ex-Libris,"

Silversmiths in France,
Simonetti, 250.

9.

Prime,

W. C,

312.

Printers (early) as bookbinders,


176.

Smith, R., 143. " Societe des Amis des Livres,"


309-

Pyle,

Howard, design Hood," 223.

for

"Robin Staggemeier, 147. Stamped designs


Stamped

for

the whole

side of a book, 178.

Quaritch's " Catalogue of Book-

leather, 216.

bindings," 107, 126.

Steinlen, M., 256.

Quentin-Bauchard, " Daphnis Chloe," 72.


Quinet, 122.

Stevenson, R. L., 271.


at

Stevens, Henry, 122. Stevens, Alfred, 175.

Stikeman, 143.
Sturgis, Russell, 312.

Reed, Sir Charles Reed's Sons,


329-

Thibaron, 120.
illustrations to

Remington,
Renascence,

Long-

fellow's "

Hiawatha," 227.
J., 143.

Thoreau, 192. Thouvenin, 57.


Tiffany

6.

&

Co., 160.
18, 76.

Rhead, Louis
Ricordi, 250.

Tory, Geoffroy,

Trautz, 119, 126, 147, 166.

Rice, Prof. R. R., 312.


Riis's

Trautz-Bauzonnet, 287.

"How

the

Other

Half

Tree

calf,

158.

Lives," 210.
Ris,

Clement
'

de, 30, 53.

Riviere, 147. Robida's " Rabelais," 249.

Uzanne, Octave, " La Reluire Moderne," 108. Uzanne, " Caprices d'un Bibliophile," 157.

Romola,
tel,"

14.

Rossi, M., design for


238.

"L'lmmor- Vedder,

E., 200, 237, 265.

Vergil, 9.
17.

Rouveyre, M., on German bind- Voltaire,


ings, 148.

Ruban,

122.

Walther, 147.

342
Warner,
237-

Index.
"Clothes
of
Fiction,"''

Whitman, Mrs., 175, 200. Whitman, Mrs., design


" Strangers
etc.,

for

Water-colours painted under the


gilt

and Wayfarers,"

edges of leaves, 215.

210.

West, Prof. A. F., 312, 327. Wheatley, Henr\- B., 175. White, Stanford, 175, 265. Stanford, design White,

Willette, M., 245, 248, 255. Woodberry's " History of Wood

Engraving," 203.
for

"Book

of Tile Club," 212.


for

Zaehnsdorf, "Art of Bookbinding,''

White, Stanford, design

Cen-

10 1, 129.

tury Dictionary, 220.

94 X4

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