Saturday, August 06, 2016

Alfred E Kerr illustrates Stories of the Irish Saints

One of my 'minor collections' is a shelf or so of 19th and early 20th century books about British Saints. I am enchanted by the stories and there is also something quite satisfying about the books, particularly those devoted to only one saint, usually a labour of antiquarian love on the part of the author. I don't normally buy books about Saints written for children but Knights of God. Stories of the Irish Saints (Hollis & Carter, 1945) by Patricia Lynch won a place on the shelf for two reasons. The first, that she has added some rather well crafted poems to the head of each story about the various saints she covers. The second reason: the illustrations.  I had never heard of Alfred E Kerr (1901-1980), which is sad not only because he has produced some really skilled and charming work for this book but also because, according to this website, for the last twenty years of his life he lived just down the road from where I grew up on the Isle of Wight.

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