17 November 2004
OMAR KHAYYAM (d. c. 1123). The Rubaiyat ... translated ... by Edward Fitzgerald ... reproduced from a manuscript written and illuminated by F. Sangorski and G. Sutcliffe. London: Siegle, Hill, .
2° (325 x 247mm). Engraved and printed by André and Sleigh with flourished initials in red and blue, 11 coloured plates. (A few plates spotted or faded at margins.) Red morocco gilt by Bayntun-Rivière, covers with multiple fillets enclosing design of a chalice encoiled by a snake, the snake formed by a brown morocco onlay, black morocco onlay forming a Moorish frame, the upper cover heightened with paste jewels, gilt edges (one jewel lacking, two others detached), red cloth case.
NUMBER 79 OF 550 COPIES, signed by Sangorski and Sutcliffe. Sangorski famously presided over the creation of a supremely elaborate peacock binding for the Rubaiyat, on commission from Sotheran's, which was sold, and then lost in 1912 when it went down with the Titanic. Sangorski himself was to die only six weeks later in a bathing accident. George Bayntun of Bath acquired the firm of Rivière and Son in 1939. This is a fine example of the firm's work, probably executed in the 1950s.
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