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The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by  illustrator] Samuel Taylor COLERIDGE (1772-1734)  David (1895-1974) - Hardcover - 1929 - from Riverrun Books & Manuscripts (SKU: 403565)

The Rime of the Ancient Mariner

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The Rime of the Ancient Mariner

by [JONES, David (1895-1974), illustrator] Samuel Taylor COLERIDGE (1772-1734)

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  • hardcover
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About This Item

Bristol: Douglas Cleverdon for the Fanfare Press, 1929. 4to (315 x 248 mm; 12 1/4 x 10 inches). 10 copper-engraved plates by Jones. Original quarter gilt-lettered cream cloth, green boards. Spine slightly soiled, light wear at extremities. LIMITED EDITION, number 265 of 480 total copies. Coleridge's poem had haunted Jones since his childhood. "Though but little known as an engraver in the 1920's, he was to be an inspired choice, and undertook his commission with great seriousness and devotion. From the first, Jones saw his task as not one of simple illustration, but as the attempt to realise in visual terms the symbolic imagery arisen from the deeps of Coleridge's imagination. Jones tells us that between 150 and 200 preliminary drawings were made in response to the commission" (Peter Larkin, "David Jones and the Ancient Mariner," in: The Coleridge Bulletin Conference Issue, [unnumbered] July 1996, pp. 2-20). In 1964, while working on the foreword to a new edition, Jones wrote to the art critic Kenneth Clark, "it was quite a business finding a copper-plate printer [in 1929]. However we found one. Even in 1929 it was becoming difficult because printing from copper-plates had of course ceased as a normal means of reproduction years before then. And as you know the process is totally different from wood-block printing. I wouldn't be surprised if very soon it will be impossible to get copper-plate engravings printed" (quoted in Thomas Dilworth, "Letters from David Jones to Kenneth Clark," in: The Burlington Magazine 142, no. 1165 (2000), p. 223). One plate entitled "Life-in-Death" depicts the skeletal ship and the two macabre dice-players. The plate caused Jones a great deal of trouble: "the balancing of the hollow spars undergirding the two figures took some time to get right, and he accidentally omitted the numeral 4 on the dice-board (his solution of re-inserting it as part of one of the dividing lines on the board is ingenious, and averted the need for a fresh plate). We are shown the two protagonists, Death together with Life-in-Death, in a strange suspended state of exultation above the yawning spars" (Larkin). The Artist and the Book 136; Ransom, Cleverdon 7. .


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Riverrun Books & Manuscripts US (US)
Bookseller's Inventory #
The Rime of the Ancient Mariner
[JONES, David (1895-1974), illustrator] Samuel Taylor COLERIDGE (1772-1734)
Book condition
Douglas Cleverdon for the Fanfare Press
Place of Publication
Date Published
Bookseller catalogs
Poetry; Illustrated Books;

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About the Seller

Riverrun Books & Manuscripts

Seller rating:
This seller has earned a 5 of 5 Stars rating from Biblio customers. member since 2009
Ardsley, New York
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About Riverrun Books & Manuscripts

Founded in 1978 and purchased in 2016 by Thomas Lecky, Riverrun specializes in fine, rare, and unusual books from all periods and genres. There are large holdings in art, photography, artists' books, fine printing, books about books, literature, signed and inscribed books, early printing, and Americana. We have thousands of books not listed online in these and many other fields, and are constantly sourcing new material from private collections and public auction. Please let us know if we can help you locate something not listed in our stock. We are members of the ABAA and are certified members of the Appraiser's Association of America.


Some terminology that may be used in this description includes:

Generally refers to minor discoloration or staining.
The outer portion of a book which covers the actual binding. The spine usually faces outward when a book is placed on a shelf.... [More]
Full page illustration or photograph. Plates are printed separately from the text of the book, and bound in at production. I.e.,... [More]
"Cloth-bound" generally refers to a hardcover book with cloth covering the outside of the book covers. The cloth is stretched... [More]
A new book is a book previously not circulated to a buyer. Although a new book is typically free of any faults or defects, "new"... [More]

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