[Combe, William], The English Dance of Death, from the Designs of Thomas Rowlandson, with Metrical Illustrations, by the Author of “Dr. Syntax.” Vol. I, London: Printed by J. Diggens, St. Ann’s Lane, Published at R. Ackermann’s Repository of Arts, 101, Strand,; and to be had at All the Book and Print-sellers in the United Kingdom, 1815. [vii; 295 pages; v] 36 hand-colored plates plus a frontispiece; Vol. II, 1816; [ii; 299 pages; v], 36 hand-colored plates plus a frontispiece.
The Dance of Life, a Poem, by the Author of “Doctor Syntax;” Illustrated with Coloured Engravings by Thomas Rowlandson. London, R. Ackermann, 1817. London: Published by R. Ackermann’s Repository of Arts, 101, Strand, 1817. [iv; ii; 285 pages] 24 hand-colored plates plus a frontispiece and an engraved title-page. Abbey, Life in England, 264; Grolier Club, Rowlandson Catalogue, 38; Tooley, Coloured Plates, 410.
All three volumes stamp-signed by the nineteenth century binder Tout. Bound in full leather with gold-stamped corners and gold decorated spines. Gilt page edges. The leather covers and spines have flaking varnish on deteriorating leather only partially stabilized by the application of Klucel-G. The boards have been reattached with moriki paper and wheat starch paste. The endcaps have also been rebuilt. The varnished surface remains friable. The exterior restoration may continue to delaminate due to continued degradation of the leather underneath. The interior of each volume is near-pristine. All plates have tissue guards, with scant off-setting.