SPL Hand Coloured Rare Book Collection Featuring Norman R Bobins

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A New Matrimonial Ladder.

London: Read & Co, [1853].
OCLC locates only 4 copies: Art Institute in Chicago, Harvard, Free Library of Philadelphia, V&A in London; COPAC sites a copy in Oxford.
London: Read & Co, [1853].

FIRST EDITION. 4to, pp. [40], hand-coloured steel-engraved title and 19 hand-coloured steel-engraved plates by Charles Hunt after Onwhyn; only minimally spotted in places; otherwise clean and fresh in recent red cloth, preserving the original publisher's cloth boards; illustrated and lettered in gilt and blind; a little rubbed. Thomas Onwhyn (1814-86) was an illustrator somewhat notorious for pirating illustrations for Dickens' works and consequentially copying the manner of H.K. Browne and George Cruickshank. "Onwhyn's most lasting contribution was to the ephemeral end of the book trade in the 1840's and 1850's, illustrating the comic side of everyday life. Undertaken for shadowy publishers such as Rock Bros and Payne, and Kershaw & Son, he produced a score of pull-out or panorama books, coloured or plain, lithographed or etched for the popular market. Satirising tourism, teetotalism, and fashion" (Oxford DNB). This work, with the text by the Irish writer Concanen satirises the pitfalls of marriage and numerous possibilities of strife and marital discord. Coloured plates in order: 1. Coloured title page. 2. 'Admiration'. Charles first sees the lovely Julia. 3. 'Agitation'. Calls the next morning. 4. 'Approbation'. Mutual satisfaction. 5. 'Flirtation'. A delightful tete a tete. 6. 'Declaration'. Declares his passion and pops the question. 7. 'Hesitation'. Covered with sweet confusion - hesitates - refers him to Papa. 8. 'Consultation'. Papa approves the match. 9. 'Acceptation'. Accepted - the ring on her finger he tries. 10. 'Solemnisation'. The top of Love's Ladder is reached. 11. 'Possession'. The Honey-moon over - Careless becomes the swain. 12. 'Rumination'. They both begin to rue. 13. 'Alteration'. Julia gets careless and reads novels. 14. 'Inattention'. Charles dines at his club - a friend and bottle. 15. 'Irritation'. Get to words and the quarrel begins. 16. 'Disputation'. Fierce the quarrel grows - everything but blows. 17. 'Detestation'. They can only agree - to part. 18. 'Separation'. Equipped for parting. 19. 'Reconciliation'. Through the intervention of friends they kiss and make it up. 20. 'All's Well That End's Well'. 'Look Before You Leap'.