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An Island Garden.

With pictures and illuminations by Childe Hassam.

Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin & Co., 1895 Stock Code: 135708
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An attractive copy, with additional material in the author's hand

Second edition, with an autograph letter signed from the author and dated 6 August 1880 reading: "Gentlemen: Will you kindly send me a copy of sayings of Epictetus, the small, vest-pocket edition, with bill for same & oblige, yours truly, C. Thaxter, Appledore, Isles of Shrals sic Off Portsmouth, N. H." tipped-in to the front free endpaper, and a manuscript quotation from the author "The sunrise never failed us yet" signed and dated January 1886 tipped-in between the front free endpaper and the following leaf.

Poet and writer Celia Thaxter (1835-1894) spent the majority of her life on the Isles of Shoals off the coast of Maine living and working with her father at his Appledore Hotel, a setting which inspired many of her works. This work is described by BAL as being "one of the most elaborate pieces of bookmaking of the period".

"Critics are usually in agreement that Celia's finest writing is in An Island Garden, a distillation of her abiding love affair with Appledore. There she planted, experimented with, and nurtured a spectrum of flowers, uncannily prevailing against inimical insects, fungi, and slugs, and fenced her blossoms against the adverse winds" (American National Biography).

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Large octavo. Publisher's white cloth, titles and decorative floral motifs in gilt to spine and boards, top edge gilt.


12 colour plates with captioned tissue-guards, including the frontispiece, and many in-text colour illustrations. Title page and dividing titles illustrated and printed in colour.


Contemporary book label of Frances Clifford Prescott to front pastedown. Cocked, lightly soiled, foot of spine a little bumped; a very good copy indeed.


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