Hammersmith, London and Chicago: Kelmscott Press, 24 October 1895. 16mo (14.3 x 10.4 cm). Golden type. Title and first leaf within woodcut borders (15a and 15), four- and six-line initials. Epigraph, title on b1r, shoulder notes, footnote on e1v, and first paragraph of colophon printed in red. , 56 pages. Original vellum over pasteboard, narrow yapp edges, gilt-lettered on spine. Provenance: Frank Jean Pool (engraved bookplate). Pool was a book and autograph collector from Cleveland, Ohio. He became a member of the Rowfant Club in 1892, and thus likely was the original buyer of this copy. His bookplate was designed by Thomas Tryon in 1893. As described in 'Book-plates of To-day' (ed. Wilbur Macey Stone, 1902) "Mr. Frank Pool is obviously a lover of drama. In an oval window set in masonry, is a Roman gentleman, laurel crowned, reading from a large volume, while at the upper right and left sides are comedy and tragedy masks from which hang a gracefully festooned wreath." Covers slightly bowed (as usual) and with a few stains, but a lovely, well-preserved copy. Item #406638
One of 300 copies on paper for America (there were an additional 11 copies on vellum for the American market; in England, there were 225 on paper and 10 on vellum). This is the only Kelmscott Press book published in America. The Chicago-based publisher W. Irving Way approached Sydney Cockerell in April 1895, suggesting a joint venture that could be issued at a modest price. Having recently finished 'Child Cristopher,' and with the Chaucer well underway, Cockerell felt that something could be arranged. Morris himself had been considering a reprint of Rossetti's book, and they agreed to co-publish the book. Printing began on 12 September 1895, and the American copies were shipped on 14 December. Cockerell wrote to Way & Williams apologizing for only sending 6 vellum copies and not the 12 that had been requested, saying that the price he had quoted "will only just cover the expenses (if it does that), the cost of binding having been greater than was anticipated." Way & Williams proposed another joint publication but Morris declined, being "full of plans of his own." Peterson A36; Tomkinson 36.