Thursday, June 30, 2011

1883. Jacket in color.

Morwood, Vernon S. Facts and Phases of Animal Life, Interspersed with Amusing and Original Anecdotes. New York: D. Appleton & Co., 1883. First edition. Decorated cloth. 8vo. 75 wood engravings. 286 pp. [The Bookmark]

The jacket repeats the binding design in red and black. The red was used mainly where gilt was used on the binding. There also are ads for four Arabella B. Buckley titles on the back of the jacket. The beveled jacket flaps are plain.

Not many jackets survive from before the 1890s that used color for illustration, although it was probably common long before this example. Many earlier jackets survive that used color for printing text.

Note how decorative this jacket is compared to the Osgood jacket for the Hawthorne title in the next post. Both jackets are from 1883 and both covered decorative bindings, but the Osgood jacket hid the binding rather than promote it, and booksellers were probably much more inclined to discard the Osgood jacket and retain the Appleton one when they put the books out for sale. Neither publisher bothered to put its name on the jacket, knowing they wouldn't survive for long.

More jackets seem to survive from D. Appleton & Co. in the 1880s (although many of them did not use color) than from any other publisher in that decade except Belford, Clarke & Co.

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