London: George Routledge & Sons, 1878-1885. First edition. Hardcover. Square quartos, and oblong octavos. Rebound in full morroco boards with art noveau-style gilt ruling on the covers. Gilt ruling, lettering and raised bands on the spine. Top edges gilt.
Collected and rebound by the bookbinders Reviere & Son in 4 hardcover volumes, this collection contains the complete run of 16 consecutive children's books of verse and nursery rhymes, produced by pioneering illustrator Randolph Caldecott between 1878-1885, for George Routledge & Sons publishing. Starting in 1878, Caldecott released 2 books every Christmas for 8 years in a row. It is largely these delightfully whimsical books upon which the artist's reputation is based, and this ultimately lead to the the Caldecott Medal for children's illustrated books being named in his honor.
Each volume contains 4 original publications, in chronological order, each with their original illustrated heavy-stock paper wrappers bound in (including publishers adds on the rear wrappers). The artist's full color lithographic images are finely printed throughout. throughout. Contents are as follows:
Vol.1: The House that Jack Built (1878), The Diverting History of John Gilpin (1878), Elegy on the Death of Mad Dog (1879), Babes in the Wood (1879). Vol.2: The Three Jovial Huntsmen (1880), Sing a Song For Sixpence (1880), , The Queen of Hearts (1881), The Farmer's Boy (1881). Vol.3: The Milkmaid (1882), Hey Diddle Diddle and Bye Baby Bunting (1882), A Frog He Would A-wooing Go (1883), The Fox Jumps Over the Parson's Gate (1883). Vol.4: Come Lasses and Lads (1884), Ride A Cock Horse to Banbury Cross and A Farmer Went Trotting Upon his Grey Mare (1884), An Elegy on the Glory of Her Sex, Mrs. Mary Blaize (1885); The Great Panjandrum Himself (1885).
Bindings with some light rubbing to extremities including the hinges of the spine. A few light scratches to the covers of volumes 3 and 4. Front cover of volume 3 with a minor water stain. Interiors with occasional sporadic minor water stains and/or smudges. Bindings and interiors in very good to very good+ condition overall. vg to vg+. Item #44203