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Individual Separated Pages

1800? 5 reproductions of Oudry's illustrations, apparently removed from a book or books and once—but no longer—matted: SS (XXVIII), "L'Astrologue" (XXXI), CW (XLV), "Le Lion Abattu par l'Homme" (LXI), and "L'Ane et le Petit Chien" (LXXII). $35 for the set from Wentworth and Leggett, Raleigh, June, '97. 

I enjoy Oudry's work, and these prints have come out well. I will be on the lookout for the edition that matches this format: pages 8.9" x 11.8" and illustrations 5.75" x 7.7". Oudry is acknowledged on all but one; five different people are listed as the engravers—all, I believe, from the original group that translated Oudry's work into printed form: Cochin and Chenu, LeBas, Tardieu, Beauvarlet, and Pasquier, respectively.

1800? Portrait of La Fontaine. Blanchard sculp.

I found this torn-out frontispiece of a small (5" x 3.25") book in a book recently purchased. While it follows the standard presentation of La Fontaine in such frontispieces, here his nose seems large and the picture's impression is unusual. The oval portrait is surrounded by geometric forms filled with printer's lines.

1820? Matted presentation of four fables of Le Bailly with engravings. $20 from Barense at Foster City, Feb., '97.

Madame Barense had this ready for me as soon as I asked for fables on my first stop at this show. The four fables presented are "L'Enfant et la Noix," "Le Loup et le Herisson," "Le Pecheur et les Brochets," and "Le Cheval et le Taureau." The texts are slightly stained at their sides. The illustrations are small (1˝" x 2") but strong.


1850?  Hand-colored print of J.B. Oudry's Fable CXXX: "Les Souhaits."  $9.99 from abclovell through Ebay, July, '22.

Here is a strong rendition of La Fontaine's fable about a couple granted three wishes.  The first two are a wish for riches and a resulting wish for poverty, to rid themselves of the burden that came with the riches.  Their third wish then turns, wisely, to a wish for wisdom.

Bennett DW Pageb.jpg (17559 bytes)

1870? Matted hand-colored illustration of DW, a page from an edition of Charles Bennett's fables, engraved by Swain. $20 from John and D'Ann Stone, The Bay Window Print Locker, Florence, OR, through Ebay, July, '99.

The colors are excellent, down to golden buckles on the natty dog's shoes. The red-polka-dotted golden scarf of the Wolf is also well rendered here. Painting a Bennett scene brings up some good questions. I have, for example, noticed the hands of both animals for the first time. Might I be noticing them because they are the only flesh-colored items in the picture?

1900? DLS

This appears to be a book illustration cut out with no identifying marks left. The perspective is unusual. The owner approaches the shaggy-dressed donkey menacingly with one hand behind his back and a club in the other hand. I have no idea where I got this picture!

1912    "The Fool that Tried to Please Everybody."  Illustration by Byam Shaw and text on p. 21 in "Libby's Annual" for 1912.  $13.50 on Ebay, Dec. 20, '06.

The original painting, according to the article, is in the Lang Art Gallery.   Shaw died in 1919.  The painting is a more detailed presentation of MSA than I believe I have ever seen elsewhere.  Libby's comment is excellent. 

This is a piece of pure comedy, carried out with zest to the last detail. The fables of Aesop are of no time or place: their shrewd wisdom applies wherever human nature exists. The story of the old man and his son and the ass can be traced to an Oriental source thousands of years old; but it is just as true in the yard of an eighteenth-century English inn, where Mr. Shaw has so delightfully placed it. The first great lesson an amiable man has to learn in life is that good advisers are often completely contradictory; and, moreover, that those who give advice will, if he takes it, often be the first to despise him for having no mind of his own.  First (in the fable) they walked with the donkey; next, the boy rode it; then: to please the critics, the old man got on it.  That would not do, so they both rode it.  Accused of cruelty, they finally carried it between them.  Here we see them struggling into the inn yard with their burden, accompanied by a procession of jeering small boys, to the huge amusement of the village worthies and gossips.  Mr. Shaw has given us much more than an illustration of the fable. It is a delightful picture of old English life and character.

1920? BC. 8.5"x11" page (47) from an unknown magazine or encyclopedia presenting "The Mice in Council," illustrated by D. Hine. $16 from Rick Meyers, Muskegon, MI, through Ebay, July, '99.

An elaborate broad margin-design of cat and mice surrounds a title balanced by an image of the cat looking down, a half-page of text, and an image of one mouse wearing spectacles speaking to a group of mice, one of whom holds a bell. The text, including moral, seems lifted verbatim from James.  The article on the back of the page gives women advice on how to test textiles.

1983 Eleven separated book pages offering art by David Frankland.  Most probably taken from Aesop's Fables as published by Hamlyn in England in 1983 and by Silver Burdett in the USA in 1986.  $14.16 from BurkeSevenVintage, Steinbach, Canada, through Etsy, July, '20.

The indication that these are separated book pages comes in the texts of other fables on the verso of each illustration.  I hope these were taken from a book in terrible condition that had no other use left.  See my comments on Frankland's art under the books themselves.