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Doves Press Bible on Display in Hornbake Library

Visit the Maryland Room in Hornbake Library to view The English Bible, printed by the Doves Press in 1903. This is an exquisite example of the fine press movement in England, which sought to create traditionally crafted, beautiful books using handmade paper, quality ink, and carefully designed type and page layout. The Doves Press operated in England from 1900-1916.

Explore more examples of fine press books in our Literature & Rare Books collections in Special Collections and University Archives.

New Acquisition: Spenser’s Faerie Queene by the Ashendene Press

IMG_7607.JPGRecently, Special Collections and University Archives acquired several beautiful examples of early 20th century fine printing. Among them is Edmund Spenser’s The Faerie Queen, printed in by The Ashendene Press in 1923.

The Ashendene Press is one of the finest examples of the private press movement in England, which valued well-designed books produced with high quality materials by skilled workmen. Private press craftsmen and artists scoffed at the poorly made, commercially-driven books and the mechanized book production of industrialized England. These beautifully crafted books are a testament to the artistry of individuals like Emery Walker, William Morris, T. J. Cobden-Sanderson, Charles Rickets, and others who sought to reclaim traditional book art in a time when profit and mass production trumped integrity and design.

Get up close and notice that the edges of the paper are rough – fine printers like Ashendene Press continued the tradition of using thick, handmade paper that wouldFullSizeRender (4).jpg stand the test of time. Because of their quality craftsmanship, private press books are often in better shape and easier to handle than paperback editions printed decades later.

Founded by C H St John Hornby, the Ashendene Press ran from 1895-1935. Ashendene books were printed in small quantities and sold through a subscription service. The Faerie Queene was available in a limited run of 180 copies on paper (12 on vellum). It was printed in black, red and blue ink, using their trademark Subiaco type. The cover is quarter brown cowhide over ivory vellum and the spine is lettered in gilt.

Visit Hornbake Library to view the Ashendene Press edition of Spenser’s Faerie Queene, on display outside the Maryland Room. Also on display are the original printing blocks for the dedication to Elizabeth I and various book headings, as well as a the advertisement for subscribers announcing the upcoming for the book.

Special Collections and University Archives is home to many examples of early and modern book design. Notable collections include:

Stop by the Maryland Room to view more items from our literature and rare book collections or contact us for more information.

New Exhibit: Alice in Punch-Land

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Sir John Tenniel (self portrait), 1889.

Sir John Tenniel (1820-1914) was already a well known artist when Lewis Carroll approached him in 1864 to illustrate his upcoming book, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Although he would later become celebrated for his iconic Alice illustrations, at the time, Tenniel was highly regarded for his work in Punch, a British weekly magazine devoted to political commentary, satire, and humor.

Tenniel worked as an painter and illustrator before becoming a political cartoonist for Punch in 1850. He contributed over 2,000 cartoons for the magazine over the next 50 years. His work covered domestic and international affairs with biting wit. Tenniel was knighted by Queen Victoria in 1893 for his artistic achievements. He officially retired in 1901.

It was Tenniel’s technical skill, the high quality of his work, and his reputation at Punch that caught Carroll’s eye as he was searching for an illustrator for Alice. The two worked closely together in the year it took to illustrate Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, with Tenniel receiving meticulous notes from Carroll throughout the process. Carroll’s respect for Tenniel was unmistakable. He famously rejected the initial printing of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland in 1865, partially due to Tenniel’s concerns over the quality of the printed illustrations (which bled on the page).

Several years later, Carroll convinced Tenniel to illustrate his sequel, Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There, published in 1871. Carroll omitted a chapter from the book , “A Wasp in A Wig”, many believe due to  Tenniel’s objections. Tenniel wrote in a letter to Carroll in 1870:

Don’t think me brutal, but I am bound to say that the ‘wasp’ chapter does not interest me in the least, and I can’t see my way to a picture. If you want to shorten the book, I can’t help thinking – with all submission – that this is your opportunity.

Since Tenniel was working for Punch at the same time he illustrated the Alice books, it is no surprise to see Wonderland characters pop up in his illustrations. For example, early drawings of Alice, Humpty-Dumpty, and the Lion and the Unicorn by Tenniel appear in the magazine before the Alice books were published.

As the popularity of Alice grew over the years, Punch utilized Alice references and parodies as a way to poke fun at politics. For example, Tweedledee and Tweedledum personified a Franco-Russian alliance in 1899, and the text to ‘How Doth the Little Crocodile’ was rewritten to parody of international affairs in 1887. Amusingly, the editors at Punch often included the line With Apologies to “Alice” in the captions for these cartoons.

Visit the Maryland Room in Hornbake Library to explore some of these early Alice-related illustrations in Punch. While there, stop by the Alice 150 Years and Counting: The Legacy of Lewis Carroll exhibit to discover more about John Tenniel, Lewis Carroll, and the Alice books.

You can also explore more illustrations from Punch, available in the Special Collections and University Archives, in our online Flickr album.

Alice in Special Collections & University Archives

Curious to discover more about Lewis Carroll and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland? Visit the Maryland Room to view Alice-related material from Special Collections and University Archives in Hornbake Library.

Here you can find early editions of Alice in Wonderland, including copies owned by Djuna Barnes and Katherine Anne Porter.  The Gordon W. Prange Collection holds Alice editions published in Japan during the Allied Occupation. Our Mass Media and Culture collections houses photographs and other records of Alice in film and media.

Check out the list below or search our catalog to discover more.

Special Collections

  • Boys and Girls of Bookland. By Nora Archibald Smith. Illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith.
    New York: D. McKay, c1923.
  • Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. By Lewis Carroll. New York: Macmillan and Co., 1900.
  • Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. By Lewis Carroll. Illustrated by Barry Moser. Berkeley : University of California Press, 1982.
  • Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There. Illustrated by Barry Moser. Berkeley : University of California Press, 1983.
  • Yours very sincerely C.L. Dodgson (alias “Lewis Carroll“) : an exhibition from the Jon A. Lindseth Collection of C.L. Dodgson and Lewis Carroll. New York : Grolier Club, 1998.
  • In Memoriam, Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, 1832-1898: Obituaries of Lewis Carroll and Related Pieces. Compiled and Edited by August A. Imholtz, Jr. & Charlie Lovett. New York : Lewis Carroll Society of North America, 1998.
  • The Tale of the Mouse’s Tail. By David and Maxine Schaefer. Illustrated by Jonathan Dixon. Silver Spring, MD : Mica Publishers, 1995.

Djuna Barnes Collection

  • Through the Looking-glass and What Alice Found There. By Lewis Carroll. Philadelphia : H. Altemus Co., [1897?]. Altemus’ Young People’s Library.
  • Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There. By Lewis Carroll. New York : Macmillan and Co., 1920.
  • Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There. By Lewis Carroll. London: Macmillan and Co., 1910.

Katherine Anne Porter Collection

  • Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. By Lewis Carroll. New York: Three sirens press [19–?].

Mass Media and Culture Collections

  • Alice in Sponsor-land: a chronicle of the adventures of Alice, the Hatter, the March Hare, and the Dormouse in that twentieth century Wonderland on the other side of your radio loudspeaker: with specific reference, as they say, to the entertainment offerings of the NBC Red Network. Illustrated by Barney Tobey. National Broadcasting Company, 1941.
  • Selections from the Columbia Pictures Television Production of ‘Alice in Wonderland.’ Golden Torch Music Corporation, 1985.
  • TV Guide. Triangle Publications, Inc.. Vol. 33, No. 49, Dec. 7, 1985; Vol. 14, No. 13, March 26, 1966.; Vol. 47, No. 9, Feb. 27, 1999.
    • Broadcast and Cable Listings of Alice adaptations on TV.
  • Tea Party Scene Still from “Alice in Wonderland.” (Photograph). Natalie Gregory, Anthony Newley, Arte Johnson, Roddy McDowell. Columbia Pictures Television for CBS Television Network, 1985. From Tom Buckley Collection. 
  • Great Performances’s Presentation of “Alice in Wonderland.” (Photograph). Public Broadcasting Station, Nov. 23, 1984. The late Richard Burton as the White Knight and his daughter, Kate, as Alice.
  • Headshots of the stars from “Alice in Wonderland.” (Photograph). Columbia Pictures Television for CBS Television Network, 1985. From Frank Absher Collection.

Gordon W. Prange Collection

  • Fushigi no kuni no Arisu (“Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”). Kusuyama, Masao, trans. Tokyo: Komine Shoten, 1948.
  • Fushigi no kuni no Alice (“Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”)Eigo Junia =Junior English, vol. 4, no. 5., 8/5/1949
  • Fushigi no kuni no Alice (“Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”)Hikari no kuni, vol. 2, no. 9., 9/1/1949
  • Fushigi no kuni no Alice (“Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”)Kodomo no mado, vol. 2, no. 2, 5/1/1947
  • Fushigi no kuni (“Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”). Kitada, Takushi. Tokyo: Furendobukkusha, 1948.
  • Kagami no kuni no Arisu (“Through the Looking-Glass”). Kusuyama, Masao, trans. Tokyo: Komine Shoten, 1948.
  • Fushigi na kuni no Arisu (“Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”). Kikuchi, Sunao. Tokyo: Kokumin Tosho Kankokai, 1948.

Happy Thanksgiving from Special Collections

Celebrate Thanksgiving with turkeys from Special Collections! Visit the Maryland Room to explore our collections when we re-open on Monday, November 30 at 10am.

 

New Additions to Special Collections

New acquisitions to Special Collections and University Archives includes several private press books including The English Bible, printed at the Doves Press, as well as Don Quixote and Spenser’s Faerie Queene printed at the Ashendene Press.   Also included among these beautifully printed books are plates of John Martin’s mezzotint illustrations of Paradise and Lost and Morte D’Arthur,  printed at the Shakespeare Head Press.

Visit the Maryland Room in Hornbake Library to view more items from our literature and rare book collections.

The Early Printing Collection: An Introduction

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A page from the Cologne Chronicle, printed by Johannes Koelhoff the Younger in 1499.

A new (very old!) collection of early printing has now been processed and digitized, and is available in the Digital Collections or by request in person in the Maryland Room. The Early Printing Collection is a set of thirty-six leaves and pages that were printed in Europe in the late 15th century. It includes printed pages from many well-known works, including the The Nuremberg Chronicle, Historia Scholastica and The Cologne Chronicle.

Incunabula

Typographical printing done before 1501 in Europe is often called Incunabula, a funny pseudo-Latin phrase that refers to the birth of printing in the 15th century. The 15th century saw important advances in the movable type printing press thanks to Johannes Gutenberg’s printing press invented around 1450. The Gutenberg Bible is the first (and probably most famous) book printed using movable type, and while you won’t find any of its pages in the Early Printing Collection, the collection does feature many other pages from Bibles and other religious and historical chronicles printed around the same time period. Within the collection the printing itself is generally clear and easy to read — that is, if you understand Latin or Middle German!

Folio 1

A page of Genesis from Historia Scholastica is covered in paste marks

Early Printing History

Even though the leaves are over 500 years old, the collection is in relatively good condition and provides excellent examples of early printing history, from paper-making to moveable type setting to woodblock printing. Many of the leaves were printer’s proof sheets or scraps, but since paper was still a relatively valuable commodity at the time, these scrap pages were recycled and used in book-binding. They’ve since been removed from bindings, but many still bear marks from the old binding paste. Looking more closely at the leaves in the collection, you can find examples of mould-made papers with visible chain lines and laid lines that indicate how the paper was made by hand using a wire mesh screen. Watermarks, the designs and images found in laid paper, can also be seen on some of the leaves, especially those from the Nuremberg Chronicle. Most of the printing is done in a Gothic typeface, also called Blackletter, though there are a few examples of roman type as well. There are leaves from several important printers from the time period, including Günther Zainer from Augsburg, Konrad Dinckmut from Ulm, and Johann Koelhoff The Younger of Cologne. As for the context, most of the leaves are from religious texts like bibles, psalters, and books of hours, while a few of the leaves come from historical and legal texts.

Folio 21 verso

An unidentified fragment of a Missal is hand-initialed and rubricated in red ink.

Explore the Collection in the Classroom

The Early Printing Collection has many potential applications for undergraduate and graduate courses on campus. Courses in departments like English, History, Art History, Art Studio, Library Science, and others can utilize the collection to study firsthand the history of printing, typography design, and rare books. Plus, with thirty-six separate folios of leave, there are enough examples for students to work individually or in small groups to closely examine the details of the page and learn about early printing firsthand.