1804 · New York
This is the first edition of these Fables to appear with American illustrator Alexander Anderson's wood engravings, following the title's original appearance in 1771; the flower-themed verses well represent a poet and translator whom the DNB identifies as "a popular writer in his day." The volume is illustrated with 11 wood engravings and 11 copper engravings done by Anderson after designs by Thomas Stothart. => The 22 illustrations are fit, charming, and LARGE on the pages.
Hamilton notes that "in the sketch of Dr. Anderson's life written by himself in 1848 . . . [he] mentions by name only two books illustrated by him" — this, and the (dare we say here, "fabled"?) General History of Quadrupeds.
Binding: American full calf binding of the first quarter of the 19th century, with a wide lacy gilt roll framing each cover and a narrower blind roll within that, the whole unobtrusively rebacked preserving the original, elaborately gilt-stamped spine.
Provenance: Early 20th-century bookplate of Allen L. Story; most recently in the library of American collector Albert A. Howard, small booklabel ("AHA") at rear.
Shaw & Shoemaker 6616; Stauffer, American Engravers, II, p. 14; Pomeroy, Alexander Anderson, 153; Hamilton, 224. On Langhorne, see: The Dictionary of National Biography. Binding as above; front pastedown with private collector's bookplate. Pages age-toned. One plate with short edge tear, not extending into image; one plate with spot of foxing just at outer edge of image. => In fact a beautiful little book. (Inventory #: 38641)