New York, 1862. 17 loose color-printed plates, listed by numbering order on contents leaf. Each sheet: 18 x 13 1/2 inches. One of the relatively few American costume books, and certainly the best such created in 19th-century America. This is a notable and unusual instance of the taste for "Turkish" which manifested itself in the furniture of the period, but seldom in books. In terms of American color plate books, this is one of the only large projects from the 1860s, when the Civil War seems to have curtailed production of such lavish enterprises. "The one really big chromolithographic book of this decade...the art is simple, but [Charles] Parson's hand is obvious in the good lithography, and Endicott's printing is well done for its time" - McGrath. "...Endicott achieved a rich variety of color which demonstrated the increased technical ability of American printers in the medium" - Reese. Henry Van Lennep was born in Smyrna, the son of European merchants. Educated, on the advice of American missionaries, in the United States, he returned to Turkey as a missionary in 1840, and spent most of the next twenty years in various parts of the Ottoman Empire. Returning to the United States in 1861, he turned his superb original drawings of Middle Eastern life into THE ORIENTAL ALBUM.... 1) TURKISH AND ARMENIAN LADIES (abroad) 2) A TURKISH EFFENDI 4) TURKISH SCRIBE 5) TURKISH LADY OF RANK (at home) 6) TURKISH CAVASS (Police Officer) 7) TURKISH LADY (unveiled) 8) ARMENIAN PIPER 9) ARMENIAN LADIES (at home) 10) ARMENIAN MARRIAGE PROCESSION 11) ARMENIAN BRIDE 12) ALBANIAN GUARD 13) ARMENIAN PEASANT WOMAN 14) BAGHDAD MERCHANT (travelling) 17) GYPSY FORTUNE TELLING 18) BANDIT CHIEF 19) CIRCASSIAN WARRIOR [mounted on card] 20) DRUSE GIRL Bennett, p.108; Blackmer Catalogue 1715; Blackmer Sale 1500; DAB XIX, p.200; McGrath, pp.38,115,162; Reese, Stamped with a National Character 97.
(Inventory #: 20403)
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