Monday, May 14, 2012

Horace Knowles Illustrates Glastonbury

It was this design for an endpaper which intrigued me first. And then I picked up the book and began looking more closely. This is the work of Horace J Knowles, the lesser known half of a pair of brothers who worked together on numerous books, many of which were either religious or relating to fairies, and they are most often credited together. These come from The Legend of Glastonbury by A. G. Chant (Epworth Press, London, 1948) which retells the folk legend that Joseph of Arimathaea brought the boy Jesus to Britain on a trading voyage and Jesus stayed, and played, and did good deeds in the area around Glastonbury and its Tor. All good fun and I was very taken with the illustrations. It's a shame, however, about the poetry in which the tale is told. It's grinding, execrable stuff which should never have seen print. Not to mind though, it's probably that fact which makes this illustrated book an inexpensive buy, available from just a couple of quid and, for the illustrations alone, worth much more.

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