Arthur Rackham was one of the preeminent illustrators of the early twentieth century,
“one of the leading illustrators from the ‘Golden Age’ of British book illustration which encompassed the years from 1900 until the start of the First World War. During that period, there was a strong market for high quality, illustrated books that typically were given as Christmas gifts. Many of Rackham’s books were produced in a de luxe limited edition, often vellum bound and sometimes signed, as well as a larger, less ornately bound quarto ‘trade’ edition. This was often followed by a more modestly presented octavo edition in subsequent years for particularly popular books. The onset of the war in 1914 curtailed the market for such quality books, and the public’s taste for fantasy and fairies also declined in the 1920s.” (via Wikipedia)
Rackham’s grotesque style was a perfect match for illustrating works from fairy stories to Wagner’s operas.
We are pleased today to offer today, on the anniversary of his death, one of the finest examples of his work…
A free Kindle version is available through Archive.org
(though I don’t know if or how well Rackham’s illustrations show up in it…)
We intend to make the “Freebie of the Week” a regular column… So stay tuned in coming weeks for other free ebooks, downloads, etc.!
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