Compositions from The Works Days and Theogony of Hesiod. Designed by John Flaxman, engraved by William Blake. [with] Compositions from the Tragedies of Aeschylus Designed by John Flaxman, Engraved by Thomas Piroli, and Frank Howard.
London: Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, & Brown, 1817-1831. Oblong folio, (2), 34 plates, 30 from Piroli's original set, plus 4 by Howard); Hesiod title page, 37 Blake plates, the first a second title page. Bound in original half brown morocco and cloth, gilt title to front cover, wear to spine edges and corners, binding strained due to weight of pages and apparently with an earlier repair, holding reasonably firm. Bound with Flaxman's Aeschylus, here the 1831 issue, published by Miss Flaxman and Maria Denman. The Aeschylus is rather dusty and with occasional mild foxing marks, and an old triangular dampstain at the upper right corner, affecting the first 20 plates to a decreasing extent, not touching the designs. Bentley believes 50 copies of this issue were printed on publication in 1831. The Hesiod plates are dated 1816 or 1817, consistent with Bentley's note that 200 sets were printed in 1817, but sold slowly, such that 18 sets were still unsold in 1838, and dealers made up combined copies of the Flaxman titles in various combinations. This set appears to be one such set. The Hesiod plates are generally clean with light dusting to margins, a few margins slightly mottled and also occasional light foxing to a few, but mainly to outer margins. Bentley, BB, 456 A; Bentley, The early Engravings of Flaxman's Classical Designs, p 53-58; Essick, William Blake's Commercial Book Iillustrations, LI, p 100.
(Item Id: 108761)