Flight of the Duchess.London: Essex House Press, 1905 Stock Code: 147283
An elegant editionFirst Essex House Press edition, number 40 of 125 copies, all printed on vellum and hand-coloured. Browning's poem was first printed in Dramatic Romances and Lyrics in 1845.
The Essex House Press was founded by Charles Robert Ashbee and Laurence Hodson following the closure of William Morris's Kelmscott Press in 1897 and "came from the heart of the arts and crafts movement" (Franklin, p. 64). Ashbee bought the Kelmscott Press's Albion printing presses after William Morris's death, and employed one of the Kelmscott compositors, Thomas Binning.
Octavo. Original stiff vellum, spine lettered in gilt, floral stamp and motto ("Soul is Form") to front cover in blind, edges untrimmed.
Hand-coloured frontispiece and final tailpiece by Paul Woodroffe in red and green, initials by hand in red, blue, green and orange, text printed in Caslon type in black. With loose tissue guards to contents.
A lovely, fresh copy, vellum bright and fresh, boards just slightly bowed as often, touch of foxing to edges, contents otherwise clean and crisp. A near-fine copy.
Franklin, p. 231; Ransom, p. 269.
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