London: Edward Arnold and New York: Samuel Buckley, 1904. 12mo, 22, (2) pp. Caslon type on vellum with hand colored frontispiece and colophon device by C. R. Ashbee and hand painted initials, first initial gilded and frontispiece heightened in gilt. Full vellum over boards, upper board blindstamped with the Essex House rose emblem and the motto Soul is Form, backstrip lettered in gilt. A near fine copy with just a little spotting to the margins of one or two leaves. Limited to 150 copies all on vellum, copy number 99. This was the twelfth book of the Great Poems series, printed between 1900 and 1905. At the death of William Morris and the closing of the Kelmscott Press, Ashbee purchased the Kelmscott presses and hired its principal compositors and pressmen with the intention of continuing its work and spirit. Goldsmiths elegy on a wholesome rural community destroyed by the enclosures act and the march of capitalism is the perfect subject for the press. But times are altered; trade's unfeeling train / Usurp the land and dispossess the swain; / Along the lawn, where scattered hamlets rose, / Unwieldy wealth and cumbrous pomp repose. Tomkinson 54.
(Item Id: 110824)