This small book was not only written by Morris but printed and published by his Kelmscott Press. The lecture was first given at the New Gallery for the Arts and Crafts Exhibition in 1889 and this edition  was printed in 1893. The Kelmscott Press was founded by Morris in 1891 to produce books following traditional principles and production techniques dating back to the early years of printing. This original copy is in the sextodecimo (16 mo pronounced sixteenmo) format and  retains the blue tinted boards although the spine is a little worn. It is printed in Roman style “Golden” type, designed by Morris to emulate fifteenth century typographical technologies, in black with red shoulder-notes. This would seem to be one of the 500 copies produced belonging to the third impression. The first impression was printed in public during the Arts and Crafts Exhibition of 1893 and can be identified by spelling mistakes of  ‘Van Eyk’ on p45 and ‘gild’ on p41. The second impression contained a correction of  ‘guilds’ but retained the misspelt ‘Van Eyk’.  By the third impression both mistakes had been rectified.

Interpreting some of the pencilled notes on the endpaper this book possibly came to the Library in 1960 and bears the cost of £4/4/- , four pounds and four shillings.

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By Dr Keith Rowntree
16 Nov 2017
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