NP (Sevilla?): NP (Jose Fernandez?), ND (ca 1860-1874). First edition. Hardcover. Oblong octavo (8 1/4 x 12"). Unpaginated.  leaves. Later full burgundy morocco, with gilt armorial to front cover, and gold lettering to spine. Raised bands. The striking gilt armorial featured on front cover is the Royal Greater Coat of Arms of Spain, 1761-1868 / 1874-1931, with the Order of Charles III. Marbled endpapers. Original illustrated wrappers bound in.
Extremely rare collection of 22 hand-colored illustrations of bullfighting in 19th-century Spain. The striking prints, all attributed to Spanish illustrator Bartolomé Tovar, depict matadores, picadores (lancers) mounted on horseback, banderilleros (flagmen), and an espada (sword servant) in various stages during the bullfight.
Some of the following plates are misnumbered, as issued:
- Frontispiece: El encierro
- Plate 1: El Alguacil recoge la llave
- Plate 2: Salida de la cuadrilla
- Plate 3: Salida del toro del chiquero
- Plate 4: El Picador cita al toro
- Plate 4: Centro de una suerte de vara
- Plate 5: Recarga de un toro en una suerte de vara
- Plate 7: Capeo por detrás
- Plate 8 : Capeo, suerte de verónica
- Plate 10: Salto de la garrocha
- Plate 11: Salto al trascuerno
- Plate 12: Capeo, suerte de farol
- Plate 13: Suerte de banderillas al Cuarteo
- Plate 14: Banderillas de frente, cambiando
- Plate 15: Sueltan perros al toro
- Plate 16: El espada brinda al toro
- Plate 17: Pase de muleta
- Plate 17: Cite para pasar de muleta
- Plate 18: Suerte de recibir
- Plate 20: Suerte del descabello
- Plate 20: El cachetero dando la puntilla
- Plate 21: Arrastre del toro por las mulas
In our running numbers, plates 6, 9 and 19 are not present, but three numbers (4, 17 and 20) are duplicated, each with a different image and caption.
During our research, we have not been able to determine the exact number of bullfighting plates executed by Tovar, however, it has been assumed that there are 21 numbered and captioned plates in this series.
Worldwide, only one library owns this book (Biblioteca Hispanica).
Our copy has two plates which are missing in the book owned by the Biblioteca Hispanica ("El encierro" and "Arrastre del toro por las mulas"), and is lacking one plate (Suerte de Volapié) which is featured in the copy of the Biblioteca Hispanica.
None of the plates featured in "La Fiesta Española" owned by the BH are signed and numbered, but, in our copy, six of the 22 numbered hand-colored illustrations are signed by the artist in the plate (Frontispiece, 8, 13, 14, 17 (first one), and 18).
Their plates are within a simple double frame whereas ours are ornated at corners and top center with five decorative ornaments (all the same for each of the 22 illustrations).
Also, the plates featured at the BH are in black and white when ours are all hand-colored.
A last interesting observation when comparing the two sets of illustrations is that while the public of the arena is present in each of the plates in their copy, it is not featured in our set of images. However, our illustrations appear more refined and finished.
You can see their digital copy at: bdh-rd.bne.es/viewer.vm?id=0000092598&page=1
Some offsetting and minor rubbing and scratching to binding. Wrappers age-toned. Slight age-toning along paper margin. Captions in Spanish. Binding in overall good to good+, interior in good to very good condition. g to vg. Item #43101