Description

    [Maxfield Parrish, illustrator]. Louise Saunders. The Knave of Hearts. With Pictures by Maxfield Parrish. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1925.

    First edition. Large quarto. [6], 46, [1], [3, blank] pages. Color frontispiece (included in pagination), with tissue guard, and color illustrations (fifteen full-page).

    Original black cloth with color pictorial label on front cover. Color pictorial endpapers. A few scuff marks, one crescent-shaped scratch at the top right edge, and some small rubbed spots on the color pictorial label. Scattered minor foxing to the front endpapers. Bookplate largely removed from the rear pastedown. The book is a bit over-opened at the half-title, page 18, and page 26. A very good copy.

    "Not until 1920 did [Parrish] agree to illustrate what was to become one of the most valuable children's books ever published, Louise Saunders's Knave of Hearts. Saunders was the wife of Maxwell Perkins, the editor of Scribner's. They summered in Cornish, New Hampshire, and were friends with the Parrishes. In a letter to J. H. Chapin of Scribner's, Parrish wrote on October 24, 1920: 'The reason I wanted to illustrate the Knave of Hearts was on account of the bully opportunity it gives for a very good time making the pictures. Imagination could run riot, not bound down by the period, just good fun and all sorts of things. You must understand all this layout to be in gorgeous color. The landscapes back of the figures in the cover lining-a very beautiful affair illuminated by a golden late afternoon sun: castles, waterfall, rocks and mountains.' Parris relished working three years on the twenty-six paintings for the Knave of Hearts. He built an elaborate castle model in his fully equipped workroom to use in the illustrations for the book...Many of the fixtures in the illustrations show handcrafted items from the Parrish household, such as elaborate hinges and a wonderful clocklike affair...that Parrish had built to let him know when the main house ran out of well water...Knave of Hearts, published in October 1925, was printed in rich colors on heavy coated paper. The illustrations were the highest quality reproductions that could be printed" (Alma Gilbert, Maxfield Parrish: The Masterworks, pp. 49-52).

    Ludwig, p. 206.


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    Auction Dates
    October, 2008
    16th-18th Thursday-Saturday
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