Merle, William Henry, Odds and Ends. In Verse and Prose. By William Henry Merle, Esq. Illustrated by George Cruikshank, from Designs by the Author. London: Longman, Rees, Orme, Brown, and Green, Paternoster Row, 1831. 8vo. 20 cm. Presumed first edition. Thirteen illustrations, of which eleven are woodcuts, and one is a signed etching by George Cruikshank, with “WHM” opposite Cruikshank’s initials. Cohn 552, This copy was bound without the advertisement. Pages 8-9 are used as a frontispiece. The etching is: “An antique glass supposed to have been in the possession of Mary Queen of Scots,” with the writing thereon reproduced in facsimile. [viii; 146 numbered pages with one additional leaf (p. 147-148). The verso of p. 147 is blank but for “S. Manning & Co., Printers, London-House yard, St. Paul’s”; 1 blank] Bound in half long grain tan calf, spine and corners over marbled boards, matching marbled endpapers. Gold ruling and a decorated gilded spine with “Odds and Ends,” “Cruikshank” and “1831,” all on the spine. Five raised bands. Top page edge gilded.
Armorial book plates of bibliophiles Thomas Gaisford (1779-1855) and The Glen, Charles Tennant (1768-1838). Tennant was the chemist who discovered bleaching powder and subsequently founded an industrial dynasty. Gaisford was a classical scholar, clergyman and the Dean of Christ Church, Oxford 1831-1855. Gaisford’s bookplate is found on the inside front pastedown. Tennant’s bookplate has been trimmed to shape and is opposite Gaisford’s. A fine copy with a remarkable provenance.