Amsterdam International Antiquarian Book & Map Fair

Selected Highlights


Antiquariaat Dik Ramkema
Bloemendaalseweg 241
2051 GC Overveen
The Netherlands


Dik Ramkema


+31-6-17620872 +31-6-17620872



Fully hand-coloured limited edition No. 20 of 50 copies by William Muir (1845-1938) "a labour of love"
William Blake - William Muir Songs of Innocence (and) Songs of Experience. Edmunton, The Blake Press, 1885, 2 vols in one, 34 and 30 leaves, hand-coloured with tissue guards, both copies with the original grey title-wrappers, 4to, gilt half calf with Morocco gilt title label on navy cloth boards, 31 x 24,5 cm. Condition Near Fine, leather here and there slightly rubbed/shaven.

Beautiful executed facsimile after the Blake issues of 1789 and 1794, reproduced in the original size and colour (plates, 11 x 7 and 13 x 8,2 cm) of Blake's famous illuminated books.
Muir used the Pearson copy for Songs of Innocence and the Beckford copy for Songs of Experience, Bentley Blake Books, 249 and 249d.

William Muir is remembered, if all today, for his hand-coloured facsimiles of the Prophetic Books of William Blake published by 'The Blake Press at Edmunton'.
Muir's copies maintain a truth to Blake's processes, if not always to his images, by continuing the basic combination of a printed monochrome image with hand colouring. His productions capture something of the spirit of the originals, their various textures and hand-made craftsmanship, better than any photographic reproductions. The first copy of Songs of Innocence took him six months and he calls it 'a labour of love'.

Blake, when he produced 'literally produced: wrote, drew, engraved and put forth' his Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience, was himself, in a spiritual sense,
a child happy on a cloud, singing and desiring such songs as few but he could write.
(H. Darton, Children's Books in England, p.179)
Exhibitor: Antiquariaat Dik Ramkema

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