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DORÉ, Gustave (illus.); LA FONTAINE, Jean de.

Fables de La Fontaine.

Avec les Dessins de Gustave Doré.

Paris: [Ch. Lahure for] Librairie de L. Hachette, 1867 Stock Code: 146397
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First Doré edition in book form, deluxe issue, with the extra plate "Les devineresses" in vol. 2. It was published simultaneously in London, after a serialized publication from November 1866. This is a superb copy, with illustrations from "one of the most popular" and "greatest of all illustrators" (Ray, 327-28).

During the period of this book's publication, Doré went from being "virtually unknown in England to being the most famous illustrator in the world" (Malan, 67), with books such as this bringing Doré to an international audience. Gustave Doré (1832-1883) was "the last great Romantic illustrator, making a fourth with Gavarni, Grandville, and Tony Johannot. Perhaps Taine summed up Doré's appeal most eloquently: 'every imagination appeared languid in comparison with his. For energy, force, superabundance, originality, sparkle, and gloomy grandeur, I know only one equal to his - that of Tintoretto'" (Ray, p. 329).

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2 volumes, folio. Publisher's deluxe binding in red cloth, spines lettered in gilt, elaborate decorative titles in gilt to front boards, decorative frames blocked in blind to boards, light orange and brown coated endpapers.


Printed in red and black, text printed within red borders, steel-engraved portrait of the author by Delannoy after Sandoz, 85 plates on china mounted on thick paper, 248 headers, and numerous tail pieces.


A hint of wear to extremities, the bindings otherwise sound and unfaded, internally crisp; a near-fine set.


Ray 249.


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