Modern Athenians A Series of Original Portraits of Memorable Citizens of Edinburgh.

Edinburgh: Adam and Charles Black, 1882. Limited edition. Hardcover. Caricatures of Scottish notables in an appealing format, drawn and etched by Benjamin W. Crombie, Miniature Painter, 1837-1847. This edition limited edition of 1040 copies, signed by A. & C. Black. 4to, xvi, 183 pp, 47 of 48 full page hand colored engravings with standing figures on the left page walking to the right, and on the right page, walking to the left, as if the figures are passing each other on the street; some figures shake hands across the gutter. Plate 5 LACKING. Color frontis depicting Sir Walter Scott. Each double spread of color engravings is followed by illustrative notes and biographical sketches written by William Scott Douglas. Plate I (1839) portrays Alexander Youngson on the left hand plate, approaching John Sheriff, alias "Dr. Syntax", on the right hand plate. Youngson was apparently not happy about being depicted with Dr. Syntax, whose name was "doubtless bestowed from the remarkable likeness he showed to the figure so called in Rowlandson's coloured prints, published about the year 1815..... Dressed with the most scrupulous care and cleanliness, in an antiquated costume of semi-military character with highly polished Hessian boots, he was to be seen every Sunday staling at a rapid pace through the streets with his cane poised on his shoulder. He rendered himself still more grotesque by wearing a pair of green spectacles and a remarkably low-crowned hat - probably a cast-off one of Dr. John Ritchie's, the well-known voluntary church controversialist". (p 3). One quarter brown leather with gilt title in gilt border at spine. Covers are gently bumped at corners and rubbed at front edge of spine; gilt at spine fresh. Approximately one inch at top of front cover sunned. Internally, owner signature at ffep. Marbled end papers. Glasgow bookseller label at top inside front cover. Pages very lightly toned; very little fox spotting, mostly to tissue guards. Item #12472

Price: $75.00

See all items by