New York, Park Avenue
9 December 1998
[POTTER, Beatrix (1866-1943), illustrator]. Frederic E. WEATHERLY. A Happy Pair...Illustrated by H.B.P. London: Hildesheimer & Faulkner, .
120 x 102 mm. Lithographed title-page and 6 chromolithographed illustrations on card by Potter. Original chromolithographed stiff wrappers illustrated by Potter, stitch bound with original pink silk cord.
RARE FIRST EDITION OF THE FIRST BOOK ILLUSTRATED BY BEATRIX POTTER. In her journal for May 1890, Potter gives an account of her efforts to have some of her Christmas card designs published, including a visit to Hildesheimer & Faulkner. Her first step was to send six of her designs (featuring Benjamin Bouncer) to Marcus Ward, who shocked her by sending them back by return post. "Following a suggestion from her brother, she sent some of her rabbit drawings to Hildesheimer & Faulkner, a greetings-card publisher, who to her amazement and delight sent her a cheque for £6 by return, with a request for more" (Judy Taylor, The Artist and Her World, p. 17). These pictures comprise her first published work: both as a series of separate chromolithographed prints and also as a work issued in book form, supplemented with verses by the prolific Victorian song-writer, Frederic E. Weatherly. Potter is only identified by her initials, "H.B.P." See Journal (London, 1966), pp. 203-206. See Laurie Deval, "The Bibliography of Beatrix Potter," in: The Book Collector, Winter 1966, pp. 454-459 (where the V & A copy is described as the only copy known); see Quinby, p. 115; V & A 1765. A VERY FINE COPY.
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Please note that there is a small surface scrape and surface tear on lower cover slightly affecting image.
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