London: printed for J. Murray, (successor to Mr. Sandby) No. 32, Fleet-Street, M.DCC.LXIX . Early Reprint. Full Calf. Reissue of the second edition of 1755 (with cancel title page) of the first history of engraving published in England. Small 8vo: ,xxxvi,140pp, with mezzotint frontispiece portrait of Evelyn etched by Worlidge after Nanteuil, engraved plate of diagrams, and folding mezzotint of the Executioner's Head, by Houston after Prince Rupert. Full contemporary calf, spine divided into six compartments by raised bands edged in gilt, red leather lettering piece gilt. An excellent example: strong, square binding, with crisp, clean pages and plates. Keynes 37. Bland (History of Book Illustration), p. 191. Lowndes II, 767. Wax (The Mezzotint), pp. 21-22. Bibliotheca Bibliographici 2046. Fine. Item #BB1669
In this small work on engraving and etching, first published in 1662 (see Wither to Prior 344), Evelyn announced a new printmaking process, the mezzotint, "Invented, and communicated by his Highnesse Prince Rupert, Count Palatine of Rhyne, &c.'." This second edition was published after Evelyn's death, the revisions based on corrections and additions which Evelyn made in the margins of his copy of the first edition. The sumptuous mezzotint is an "exact copy"—though reduced in size—of a detail from Rupert's largest and most famous work, "The Great Executioner," considered one of the genre's finest examples. According to Keynes, referring to the first edition, this "print has been the prey of collectors of mezzotints and is missing from many copies of the book. When present, it enhances the price of the volume quite out of proportion to its rarity or intrinsic value." In this second edition, the mezzotint is Richard Houston's copy, which Keynes pronounces "good," and which is often surreptitiously inserted in the first edition in place of Prince Rupert's original. N. B. With few exceptions (always identified), we only stock books in exceptional condition, with dust jackets carefully preserved in archival, removable polypropylene sleeves. All orders are packaged with care and posted promptly. Satisfaction guaranteed. (Fine Editions Ltd is a member of the Independent Online Booksellers Association, and we subscribe to its codes of ethics.).