Ireland: Its Scenery, Character, &c.
In Three Volumes. A New Edition.London: Hall, Virtue and Co., [c. 1850] Stock Code: 145570
A handsome set of this important and comprehensive travelogue of Ireland; scarce in a contemporary binding.
Samuel Carter Hall (1800-1889) and Anna Maria Fielding (1800-1881) were both born in Ireland but moved to London to be married in 1824. Hall was a prominent journalist who edited various literary magazines, most notably the prestigious Art Journal, while Fielding was a novelist and playwright who published a number of children's book, including Lights and Shadows of Irish Life (1838), Sketches of Irish Character (1829) and Chronicles of a School-Room (1830). Ireland, Its Scenery and Character was compiled between 1841 and 1843, in the years leading up to the Irish famine, and was based on two tours of the country conducted by the couple in 1825 and 1841. It is the first of several collaborations between Hall and Fielding, and their stylistic affinity means that "it is often difficult to discern from whose pen writings under his name actually issued" (ODNB). Each chapter is devoted to a different county, and Hall used his influence in the art world to commission some of the finest artists of the 19th century to make engraved illustrations to accompany the text, notably Thomas Creswick (1811-1869), after whom the Royal Academy instituted a Creswick Prize. A companion volume on Scotland was planned but never materialised.
3 volumes, large octavo (250 x 165 mm). Contemporary green half morocco, titles and Irish harp and shamrock in gilt to spines, green pebble-cloth boards blocked in gilt with the arms of Liverpool Collegiate Schools, all edges gilt.
Engraved frontispiece and additional title to each vol., 43 engraved plates, 19 maps, and numerous in-text engraved illustrations.
Light wear to corners, discreet colour restoration, scattered foxing to contents, to first and last few leaves mostly, sometimes affecting the plates; still, an attractive copy.
Hunnisett pp. 123, 199 for the first edition.
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