The Fables of John Gay Illustrated
Owen, Octavius Freire
. George Routledge & Co. . London/NY
PR3473.F3 1857 (Carlson Fable Collection, BIC bldg)
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This book seems to be a direct descendant of Bodemann #328.1, a first edition in 1856 by Frederick Warne. I presume that the first edition refers to both the publisher and the illustrations by Harvey and Dalziel. This book is thus internally identical with two presumably later editions I have dated to 1866 (smaller in format) and 1866? (larger format). Both of these were published by Frederick Warne. (There is thus a historical anomaly here. This reprint is or may be earlier than the editions I have by the original publisher.) As I mention in my comments on the Warne editions, among the most interesting parts of this volume are the notes and endpieces. The notes show decided wit (e.g., 185-6). By contrast with the larger illustrations, which perhaps resemble Tenniel most but are inferior in quality, the endpieces are engaging (though unfortunately small) presentations of Aesop's fables--perhaps borrowed from Harvey's own work illustrating Northcote? Some representative illustrations and fables include: The Monkey Who'd Seen the World (I 14, The Old Woman and the Cats (I 23), and The Baboon and the Poultry (II 3). The blue cover here features a golden monkey reading Gay's Fables, with the title underneath: The Monkey Who'd Seen the World.