Sunday, June 22, 2008
The Book of Job
A little while ago I mentioned that I had some copies of The Connoisseur which I was dismantling for the very few potentially saleable bits in them. One of the little delights I found in them was a couple of references and images to an edition of The Book of Job, printed by William H White off his short-lived Abbey Press in Edinburgh and published by Bell and Sons of London in 1902.
The thing which intrigued me were the illustrations by Robert T Rose. The Connoisseur was printing some of them because they were reviewing The Scottish Society of Artists Exhibition in 1913 which included a display of fine printing and illustration. They had this to say about Mr Rose's work:
...one must not conlude without mentioning another literary treasure embraced in the display - an edition of The Book of Job, printed in Morland type by the defunct Abbey Press, and illustrated with pen-and-ink drawings by Mr R. T. Rose. This artist is not a sound draughtsman in the ordinary academic sense of the term, and yet he stands in the front rank of contemporary illustrators. He had not the power of Mr Austin Spare, nor the delicate touch of Mr Lawrence Housman, but he always contrives to render the essential spirit of the literature with which he is dealing; and, in the drawings in question there is hardly one but exhales surely the wierdness and mystery which permeate the Book of Job.
The illustrations above are scanned from the magazine with the exception of the title page and frontis which I had to trawl the net for.