This weekend’s book purchase looks like an expensive volume but was actually pretty reasonably-priced for a book that’s 126 years old. This is no. III of a three-volume set of the Thousand and One Nights translated by Edward William Lane, published by Chatto & Windus in 1883. I bought it mainly for the copious wood engraving illustrations by William Harvey although the book itself is a beautiful, if battered, work of art: gold edging on the boards, marbled endpapers (something we did at Savoy for Lucy Swan’s novel) and marbling on the paper edges (Lucy’s book had gold edging). Like many fine old books the heavy boards and thick paper stock means it’s very heavy and it’s these quality materials which have helped it survive this long.
I wasn’t going to put this through the flatbed scanner so a few photo snaps follow.