Category Archives: Illustrated books

illustrated books

The Pennyroyal Alice

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland [by] Lewis Carroll; illustrated by Barry Moser; preface and notes by James R. Kincaid; text edited by Selwyn H. Goodacre; printed by Harold McGrath at Pennyroyal Press (West Hatfield, Mass.: Pennyroyal Press, 1982). Bound volume and additional portfolio of 68 black and white engravings, signed by Moser. “The Pennyroyal Press Sesquicentennial Edition of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland was printed in an edition of three hundred and fifty copies, of which fifty have been reserved for participants & patrons” –Colophon. Copy 317 of 350. Graphic Arts Collection Oversize PR4611 .A7 1982bF

Notes on the prints by Barry Moser (1981) “To illustrate Alice entails a certain indelicacy, for Alice is a story of loneliness. Its illustrators, beginning with Carroll himself and including Tenniel, Rackham, Steadman, Pogany, Furniss, and Dali, have intruded on the privacy of Alice’s adventure, standing apart and observing Alice in her dream. They have been voyeurs, and yet there can be no voyeurs to dreams. In The Pennyroyal Alice, the reader is a voyeur only when Alice is associated with her sister: first, on the bank; then, after awakening, running home for tea; and finally in her sister’s reverie. The images of Alice’s dream are always seen from Alice’s point of view, for after all, the dream is Alice’s dream.

…Carroll’s thoughts on his own creation provided important keys which took The Pennyroyal Alice in interesting visual directions. For instance, Carroll commented to Alexander Macmillan in 1864, that the binding cloth for Alice should be bright red—not because it was the best, he said, but because it would be “the most attractive to the childish eyes.” I used that note as a displaced chromatic key: red for the shoulder commentary, and red for Alice’s name when it is shrieked by the White Rabbit in the trial scene. Similarly, Carroll’s habit of writing letters in purple ink suggested the use of violet leather for the binding. The blue that appears in the chapter heads and other titles is, of course, Oxford blue. Carroll’s (often meddlesome) letters to and about Tenniel, Arthur Hughes, and G.W. Taylor gave me insights into Carroll’s vision of Wonderland, a contradictory vision which embraced the “weird” and “grotesque” as enthusiastically as it embraced the “graceful and pretty.”…

The Cheshire Cat is modeled after the hairless Sphinx, a ridiculously rare feline, which like a mule cannot reproduce itself.”

“In 1977 Moser met Andrew Hoyem, who asked if Moser would be interested in illustrating Arion Press’s forthcoming Moby-Dick. He was, he did, and it was published to great fanfare. This had profound ramifications for Pennyroyal Press because, as Moser reasoned in retrospect, he could certainly design a book as well as Hoyem, and Harold McGrath, who was widely considered as the finest letterpress printer in America at the time, was certainly as good a pressman as any of Hoyem’s. And so Moser, McGrath, and Jeff Dwyer, their business manager and partner, determined to produce something that was much grander than any of the previous Pennyroyal books. In 1982 the Pennyroyal Press edition of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland appeared and subsequently won the 1983 American Book Award for the trade edition published by the University of California Press in Berkeley, California.”–

Fables drawn by Gustave Doré

Princeton University Library lists 696 versions of the Fables of Jean de La Fontaine (1621-1695) dating from 1668 to 2018 in twenty identified languages, including both paper and online, audio, manuscript, visual, projected, and a senior thesis. Yet it was a surprise when a request came for the book illustrated by Gustave Doré.

His more than 300 designs were first published in Paris by Librairie de L. Hachette in 60 parts between 1866 and 1868. Our London and New York edition published by Cassell, Petter, and Galpin has no date connected to it but sources list 1868. It was a generous gift from the great book collector W.T. Scheide.


Don’t miss the lizard hanging from the ceiling.


Doré’s designs were handsomely wood engraved by T. Ettling; Huyot; Adolphe François Pannemaker (born 1822); George Auriol (1863-1938); Paul Jonnard (ca. 1863-1902); and possibly others, but the prints were not well received. “La Fontaine sees clearly and true; M. Doré sees falsely, strangely and eccentrically,” wrote a critic (recorded by Jules Claretie). The artist himself was worn out by the effort and wrote, “-the job appalled me, crushed me.”

Regardless, readers loved the translation and the prints leading to multiple editions, including a sold out trade edition. The unusual presence of human beings in these animal tales seemed to resonate with people. Situations are presented with great dramatic flare and a realistic terror usually reserved for Dante or Milton. What do you think? Read more about the project in Nigel Gosling, Gustave Doré, (Newton Abbott: David and Charles, 1973) Marquand ND 553.D7G6.


Jean de La Fontaine (1621-1695), The Fables of La Fontaine, translated into English verse by Walter Thornbury, with illustrations by Gustave Doré (1832-1883) (London and New York: Cassell, Petter, and Galpin, [1800?]). GAX copy: Bookplate of William Taylor Scheide (1847-1907). Graphic Arts Collection Oversize 2003-0072Q


Poems by the Knight of Morar, See Princeton


The British Museum holds an etching [left] by George Cruikshank (1792-1878) designed as a frontispiece to Sir William Augustus Fraser’s Poems by the Knight of Morar, with the inscription “Designed & Etched by- George Cruikshank- September 27th 1870- 78 years of age.” At the bottom someone has written “See Princeton…”.

Princeton University’s Graphic Arts Collection holds a watercolor sketch [below] for this print but no book, since the proposed volume with this 1870 frontispiece was never published.


Thanks to the gift of Richard Waln Meirs (Class of 1888), the Graphic Arts Collection does have two editions of Fraser’s book from 1867 with other Cruikshank’s designs, both particularly rare unpublished copies: Sir William Fraser (1826-1898), Poems by the Knight of Morar (London: Printed by Whittingham and Wilkins, 1867). Copy 1 has three steel engravings by Gustave Doré (1832-1883) and one etching by G. Cruikshank.  Copy 2 uses that Cruikshank print as a frontispiece, described here:

“Or on the sundial’s polished face
Round and round the circle trace,
Now to the gnoman’s point they climb
Mocking the Moon’s mistaken time”

…What a way to make a living

(left) The Engraver or Plate cutter, ca. 1725.   (right) The Engraver, 1694.

In 1568, Jost Amman carved woodcuts depicting various occupations, printed together with several lines of verse by Hans Sachs. In 1694 the Amsterdam artist Jan Luyken (or Luiken) and his son Casper published a collection of 100 engravings depicting arts and craft professions, also with a six-line poem below.

Each of these books were enormously successful and many variant copies followed. Recently the Graphic Arts Collection acquired an Amsterdam edition by Reinier and Josua Ottens, published around 1725. This set of engravings includes occupations copied directly from the Luykens’ volume but with completely new verses below.

The prints are also shifted into a new order, offering little narratives. One such example, shown below, is a Doctor seen with a massive botanical open before him and an unhappy patient opening a flask. The verse translates loosely: “The sick people who appear before me are taken in by medics, unless their coincidence was too great, I know no drinks for death.” This is immediately followed by the grave digger seen with a collection of skulls.

A few more plates are posted here.

Afbeelding der menschelyke bezigheden, bestaande in hondert onderscheiden printverbeeldingen vertonende allerhande stantspersonen [= Depictions of Human Activities, Consisting of Hundreds of Distinguished Printed Images Showing All Kinds of People] (Amsterdam: Reinier and Josua Ottens, ca. 1725). Graphic Arts Collection GAX 2018- in process.


See also:

Jan Luyken (1649-1712) and Casper Luyken (1672-1708), Het menselyk bedryf, vertoond. in. 100. Verbeeldingen [= Human Industry, exhibited in 100 Images] (t’Amsterdam: Gedaan door Johannes en Caspaares Luiken, 1694). Reprint of 1694 original. Rare Books 3382.34.358

Hartmann Schopper (born 1542), [Panoplia] omnium illiberalium mechanicarum aut sedentariarum artium genera continens (Francofurti ad Moenum: [Apud Georgium Coruinum, impensis Sigismundi Feyerabent], M.D.LXVIII [1568]). Verses by Hartmann Schopper, accompanied by woodcuts by Jost Amman (1539-1591). Graphic Arts Collection 2003-1720N

Hans Sachs (1494-1576), Eygentliche Beschreibung aller Stände auff Erden (Franckfurt am Mayn : [s.n.], 1568). British Library Online


Note, Jost depicts a woodcutter rather than an engraver, cutting wood rather than copper.

Mr Pipp the Barber and other early comic strips

The Graphic Arts Collection recently acquired three items from the library of Anne and F.G. Renier of interest to early comic strip researchers. Two were drawn by John Lewis Roget (1828-1908), the son of thesaurus-creator Peter Mark Roget. For more examples of work by John Lewis Roget, see: The third volume has potential connections to Roget.

Above are a few of the 44 pages from Mr. Pipp,  in which he attempts to woo Mrs. Plum by learning to dance, wearing a wig, losing weight, and other personal improvements. Poor guy.

Viewers will immediately think of Rodolphe Töpffer (1799-1846), who is often credited with drawing the earliest European illustrated comic strip (although James Gillray was doing it much earlier). Töpffer drew Histoire de Mr. Vieux Bois in 1827 and then, published the small volume in 1837. See: There is no record of Roget’s Mr Pipp appearing in print.


Along with Pipp, we also acquired A Shepherd Once Had Lost His Love, which takes its title from the popular song from Storace’s Drury Lane Opera The Cherokee, 1794. Finally, seen below is a work by the unknown Adolphus Gosling, also named W.A.G. Neither moniker has been found in any database or drawing catalogue and yet, the very similar style suggests a connection with Roget.

What do you think?


John Lewis Roger (1828-1908), A Sketch of a Passage in the Life of Mr. Pipp the Barber; wherein the inroads made upon his peace of mind by the Widow Plum, the fair grocer, are duly registered by their mutual friend and admirer J.L.R. ([England] : J.L. Roget, 1848). Graphic Arts Collection GA2018- in process
John Lewis Roger (1828-1908), A Shepherd Once Had Lost His Love (1847). Graphic Arts Collection GA2018- in process
W.A.G. [Adolphus Gosling], Outlines of the the most interesting portion of the chequered life of that singular individual, designed and drawn by W.A.G. (1851). Graphic Arts Collection GA2018- in process

Kees van Dongen and Kipling

The Dutch painter Kees (Cornelis Theodorus Maria) van Dongen (1877-1968) moved to Paris in 1897, where he was introduced to the artists associated with the Revue Blanche, making a name for himself in the popular press. Between 1901 and 1912, his work was published in L’Assiette au beurre a satirical journal loved by the political left for its radical, sometimes violent lithographs, along with Félix Vallaton, Kupka, Juan Gris, Jacques Villon, Steinlen, and Jean-Louis Forain, In particular, the October 26, 1901 issue devoted to prostitution in Paris was chiefly drawn by Dongen (Rare Books Oversize 0904.133q).

Beginning with the Salon d’automne of 1905, Dongen joined André Derain, Maurice de Vlaminck, and others showing wildly colored canvases, which became known as Fauvism, reinforced at the Salon des indépendants of 1906 and Salon d’automne of 1906.

Dongen’s travels through Spain, Morocco and Egypt led to exotic, sometimes erotic portraits earning him a reputation as chronicler of the period. See:

But in a departure, Dongen agreed to work on two project unlike anything previous. In 1919, the artist was enlisted to design the imaginative cover typography for a wealthy socialite, Irène Hillel-Erlanger’s book entitled Voyages en Kaleidoscope [Voyage in Kaleidoscope Marquand Library PQ2615.I35 V7 1919]. Sources say that shortly after publication in Paris, all copies of the book were confiscated and pulped, but clearly a few survived.

Then in 1920, Dongen illustrated a collection of short stories by Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) entitled Les plus beaux contes de Kipling [The Most Beautiful Tales of Kipling]. In New York, Elmer Adler saw and immediately acquired a copy, which he brought to Princeton when he moved down in 1940.

Rudyard Kipling and Kees van Dongen, Les plus beaux Contes de Kipling, 2nd ed.  (Paris: [impr. Louis Kaldor; images coloriées par l’atelier Marty Henir] Jonquiéres & compagnie, 1926). Including 18 full page pochoir colour illustrations and several smaller illustrations (also coloured). Copy 170 of 300. Graphic Arts Collection GAX Oversize PR4853.F7 .F3 1920q

For a complete biography of Kees van (Cornelis Theodorus Maria) Dongen (1877-1968), see Anneke E. Wijnbeek’s entry in Oxford Art Online


PBT 1904-1917

Beginning in September 1904, the journalist and poet Eustaquio Pellicer (1859-1937) wrote, edited, and published the satirical weekly P.B.T. out of Buenos Aires. Subtitled “para niños de 6 a 80 años” [for children ages 6 to 80] the magazine lasted thirteen years–693 issues–and together with the Program in Latin American Studies (PLAS), the Graphic Arts Collection has acquired a rare, nearly complete run.

Vol. 1, no. 1 (Sept. 24, 1904)

“The Buenos Aires of the Early Twentieth Century is Reflected in its Pages with Intelligence and Humor,” writes one advertisement. “The word ‘pebete’ in the title was a popular expression in Spain at the time to refer to a boy and which would later take root in Argentina as ‘pibe’.”

The publication was a resounding success, beginning with a print run of 5,000 and explanding to 45,000 copies. It remained true to its motto, focusing on children and adults with varied content featuring photographs and illustrations of weekly current events, stories, poems and reports, jokes, and informative advertisements.

Political satire and caricature also held a prominent place in its pages. P.B.T. was produced by some of the most renowned graphic artists and caricaturists of the time, since a primary focus was precisely the publication’s visual aspects and political caricature. Among them were Mayol, Cao, Zavattaro and Fortuny. This weekly publication, which enjoyed great popularity, contains a wealth of information for the study of Argentine society from the early 20th century to World War I.  Pellicer retired in 1910, maintaining fluid contact with his publication.


Eustaquio Pellicer (1859-1937) was a Spanish journalist, poet, and humorist based in the cities of Rio de Janeiro first and Buenos Aires later. He studied high school in his hometown and in 1886 he traveled to the Río de la Plata where he worked in publications such as La unión Gallega de Montevideo and El Ferrocarril.

In the Uruguayan city of Montevideo he founded a humorous weekly called La Pellicerina and later, in 1890 he founded the magazine Caras y Caretas . Years later he settled in Buenos Aires and at the request of Bartolomé Mitre Vedia founded in that city the Argentine version of the magazine, which gained great popularity.


Eustaquio Pellicer (1859-1937 ), P.B.T.; semanario infantil ilustrado (para niños de 6 a 80 años) (Buenos Aires, 1904-1917). This collection was purchased in part with funds provided by the Program in Latin American Studies (PLAS) and in part the Graphic Arts Collection. GAX 2018- in process.

Hans Burgkmair’s woodcuts reused in “Le relationi universali”

Lengthy essays have been written about Giovanni Botero’s Universal relations but for the Graphic Arts Collection, it is the book’s Aggiunta (supplement) added by publisher Alessandro Vecchi with 33 woodcuts from 32 blocks that must be the primary focus of this rare publication. Vecchi knew the power of pictures.

Now attributed to the Renaissance genius Hans Burgkmair (1473-1531), the 30 full-page and 2 half-page woodcuts fall into two sections: the first group depict semi-human monsters and the remainder represent natives of India, Guinea, and East Africa. Walter Oakeshott’s 1960 study claims this was “the first serious study of native life and dress made for publication in a European travel book.”

Thanks to funds provided by the estate of Gillett G. Griffin, the copy recently acquired by the Graphic Arts Collection comes from the collection of Count Wolfgang Engelbert von Auersperg (1641-1709). The volume also holds a 19th-century bookplate of the Auersperg princely library in Laybach (Ljubljana), along with a label of Helmut N. Friedlaender.

Hans Burgkmair the Elder was the foremost Augsburg designer of woodcuts of his time, and together with Hans Holbein the Elder, the most important painter of the early sixteenth century in the city. The British Museum notes that the artist:

“Trained with his father, the painter Thoman Burgkmair (q.v), and from 1488 to 1490, was apprenticed to Martin Schongauer in Colmar. Designed woodcuts for the leading presses in Augsburg throughout his career. He became a master in 1498, and had a short stay in Italy during 1507. Worked primarily for the emperor Maximilian from c.1508 to 1519, for whom he designed the Genealogy of the Habsburgs of 1509-11, Der Weisskunig of 1514-16, Der Theuerdank of 1517 and the Triumphal Procession of 1516-18. …Between 1508 and 1512, [Burgkmair] played a leading role, together with the printer Jost de Negker, in the development of printing in colour. He was particularly influential in the introduction of Italian Renaissance forms into Augsburg.

The first of Burgkmair’s 15 woodcuts in the Aggiunta show mythological semi-human monsters, including a centaur, a dog-headed man, and others reminiscent of the border cuts in Schedel’s Nuremberg Chronicle.

The remaining 17 cuts depict real men and women, in attire and appearance exotic to European readers, 8 of which form part of a panorama that was cut up into single vignettes. The British Museum owns a rare portion of this procession of the King of Cochin, noting:

“These three blocks come from a set of eight, which was originally printed in the format of a frieze … and was based on a short report by Balthasar Springer published in 1508 of the first voyage made by German traders in 1505-6 to Africa, Arabia and the East Indies.”

The Princeton University Art Museum owns a single section (seen below).

Burgkmair’s original woodcuts must have been known, as they were copied throughout the 16th century, but the blocks themselves were not published until the 1618 edition of Le relationi universali. For the 1622 edition now at Princeton, Vecchi added a title illustration and improved the layout, using a larger type fount.

Giovanni Botero (1544-1617). Le relationi vniversali … diuise in sette parti… In oltre vi s’ aggiunge … un breve racconto di Mostri, & Usanze di quelle Indie, con le sue Figure al naturale d’ Alessandro de Vecchi … Quinta impressione stampata & ricorrette (Venice: Alessandro Vecchi, 1622-1623). Eight parts, numbered to six: with the Aggiunta to Part 4, and Part 6 in two parts, separately titled and paginated. Graphic Arts Collection GAX 2018- in process

See also:
Hartmann Schedel (1440-1514), Das Buch der Croniken und Geschichten (Liber chronicarum) (Nuremberg, Anton Koberger, 23 Dec. 1493). Rare Books and Special Collections EXI Oversize 1016.816.11f

Walter Oakeshott (1903-1987), Some woodcuts by Hans Burgkmair : printed as an appendix to the fourth part of Le relationi universali di Giovanni Botero, 1618 (Oxford: Printed for presentation to the members of the Roxburghe Club, 1960). Graphic Arts Collection 2009-0966N

Hans, the elder Burgkmair (1473–1531), The Savages of Calicutt woodcut; watermark: HG? Block. Princeton University Art Museum. Gift of Professor Robert A. Koch, Graduate Class of 1954 x1983-159


front pagesback pages

Together with Slavic, East European and Eurasian Studies, the Graphic Arts Collection has brought to North America the first complete run of Krysodav! also known as The Rat Crusher.

Complete in three issues, this short-lived satirical Russian literary journal was produced under the editorial direction of Ukrainian writers Leonid Nedolia (later the main editor of Iugo-Lef magazine) and Mark Gai. It features poetry and prose by a number of noted writers related to contemporary politics and social issues in Russia, although it is the spectacular graphics throughout that will draw you in.

Vladimir Vladimirovich Mayakovsky (1893-1930) wrote the poem My [i.e. Us] for the front cover of the first issue (see top). Sergei Mikhailovich Tretyakov (1892-1937) wrote the hymn of the magazine that also appeared in the first issue: in his poem Krysodav is the metaphor for USSR. Sergei Makletsov (born 1892) contributed the impressive collage Nozhnitsy po Trotskomu [i.e. The Scissors according to Trotsky] showing Red Army soldier cutting ‘former people’ with giant scissors (above).

The second issue has several caricatures by Kirill Zdanevich (1892-1969) including the full-page back cover (above) with a Red Army soldier proclaiming Workers of the world, Unite! Issue three also features a Red Army soldier (Lenin) rolling over the map of Istanbul with its people trying to escape. Other contributors include Nikolai Aseev, Osip Brik, Aleksei Kruchenykh, Vsevolod Meyerhold, Dmitry Moor, Boris Zemenkov, and Boris Yefimov.


Крысодав! = Krysodav! (Moskva: [Sibkraĭizdat], 1923). No. 1 (ii︠u︡nʹ 1923 g.)-no. 3 (okt. 1923 g.). Complete run. Graphic Arts Collection GAX 2018- in process

See also online:;ava332

Coming Soon…

Paul Souday (1869-1929), Les livres du temps (Paris: Émile-Paul Frères, 1913). ReCAP PQ281 .S71 1913

If Colette, author of La vagabonde, opened a store, would it be a travel shop? Wouldn’t Max Jacob, author of Le Cabinet noir, open a photography store? What about others?

This is the brilliant literary jeu d’esprit attempted by Pierre Henri Mac Orlan (Pierre Dumarchey, 1882-1970) in conjunction with the artist Henri Guilac (1888-1953) and Daniel-Henry Kahnweiler (1884–1979) who was publishing under the name Simon Kra. It’s easy to imagine them sitting at a sidewalk cafe late one night devising the scenarios, and then preparing a limited edition with pochoir plates under the title Coming Soon. 62 Literary Shops. Here are a few.

André Maurois (1885-1967), Ni ange, ni bête (Paris: B. Grasset, 1927, c1919). ReCAP 3269.34.367

Jean Giraudoux (1882-1944), Adorable Clio (Paris: Emile-Paul, 1920). ReCAP *Z-4838

Anatole France (1844-1924), Le livre de mon ami (Paris, Calmann-Lévy [189-?]). First edition published in 1885. ReCAP PQ2254 .L587 1890z

André Salmon, Peindre (Edité par Paris Ed La Sirène, 1921)

Edmond Jaloux (1878-1949), Le Reste est silence (Paris: P.-V. Stock, 1909). ReCAP 3260.26.376.11

Max Jacob (1876-19 ), Le Cabinet noir, lettres avec commentaires ([Paris] Gallimard, 1968). ReCAP 3260.24.323

Benjamin Crémieux (1888-1944), Le premier de la classe (Paris: B. Grasset, 1921). ReCAP PQ2605.R4 P7 1921

Pierre Mac Orlan and Henri Guilac, Prochainement Ouverture … de 62 boutiques littéraires (Paris: Simon Kra, [1925]). 62 pochoir plates. Graphic Arts Collection GAX 2018- in process.