PASS, J et al. Botanical plates.

J. Wilkes. [n.d., c. 1820].

£2700


4to. 2 vols. Quarter vellum, marbled boards, bound by Ralph Partridge; 128 hand-coloured botanical plates after J. Pass and others, extracted from Wilkes's Encyclopedia Londinensis; a little rubbing to edges, brown marks to vellum of vol 1, paper labels chipped, otherwsie very good. Provenance: ffep of vol 1 with ownership signature of Frances Partridge and her manuscript note "Bound by Ralph Partridge". Both volumes with shelf mark from the library at Ham Spray House, Lytton Strachey's home in Wiltshire which was a country retreat for the Bloomsbury set. Ralph Partridge lived there in a complicated menage a trois with Dora Carrington, to whom he was married, and Strachey, to which Frances was added when she fell in love with Ralph. They married after Dora's suicide.

This set of beautiful plates was used by Frances as part of her research for a project with the artist Richard Choppng to publish an definitiive modern British flora. Alas, their "modern Sowerby" never materialised after the publisher Allen Lane withdrew his support due to the ever-spiralling costs.

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