With Maxfield Parrish's Beautiful Illustrations and Inscribed by Saunders[Maxfield Parrish, illustrator]. Louise Saunders. The Knave of Hearts. With Pictures by Maxfield Parrish. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1925. First edition. Signed and inscribed on the half-title page, "For Betty Dunn, / Hoping that she will supply the reader for / this book - / Very affectionately, / Louise Saunders (Perkins) / February 27 - 1933". Large quarto. , 46, , [3, blank] pages. Color frontispiece (included in pagination), with tissue guard, and fifteen full-page color illustrations by Maxfield Parrish. Original black cloth with color pictorial label on front cover. Color pictorial endpapers. Minor rubbing and toning to cloth with extensive soiling to rear board. Front hinge soft and rear completely separated. Small stain to tail of textblock, not affecting images or text. Light foxing to endpapers. Very good.
"Not until 1920 did [Parrish] agree to illustrate what was to become one of the most valuable children's books ever published, Louise Saunders'sKnave 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.' Parrish 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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