The Art of Book Design: The Swedish Fairy Book

Klara Stroebe, ed. Translated by Frederick Martens. Illustrations by George W. Hood. The Swedish Fairy Book, New York, Frederick A. Stokes, 1921.

I really enjoyed Pasakas, the Latvian book of fairy tales sent in by rq, so I thought I’d check out some other foreign tales. There are a myriad of Swedish fairy tale books, but this edition caught  my eye. In the preface to the book the author tells us that,

 There has been no attempt to “rewrite” these charming folk-and fairy-tales in the translation. They have been faithfully narrated in the simple, naive manner which their traditional rendering demands.

The tales might be traditional, but the artwork isn’t. The cover art and interior plates are all rendered in soft, flowing watercolors more typical of the art nouveau period than the Medieval period. Enjoy! [Read more…]

The Art of Book Design: Little Curiosity, The Story of a German Christmas

J.M. Callwell. Little Curiosity, The Story of a German Christmas. London (Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dublin), Blackie and Son, 1884.

Surprise! It’s July 25 –  the perfect day for mid-summer Christmas. I love that this cover has none of the usual trappings that appear on later books about the season. There’s no snow, no crèche, no tinseled tree and nary a gift in sight – just a happy little bird singing.


via: University of Florida Digital Collections, George A. Smathers Libraries


YouTube Video: What Can House Elves Teach Us About Slavery? (Harry Potter Theory)

In the past, I have expressed the opinion that just about the only really decent person in the whole Potterverse is Hermione Granger and I stand by that statement. Every single wizard was way too keen on having slaves.

I found this guy’s pronunciation a bit difficult to understand, but I got over it and the video was informative. I did not know that the argument “slaves are happy” was actually really used in the UK by anti-abolitionists since education about the minutiae of slavery is not really part of the curriculum in our schools.

The Art of Book Design: Little Curiosity

John Guidfollow; or, the Murder of the Earl of Strathmore. A Mystical, Historical Romance of Forfarshire. Alexander Lowson. Glasgow: Thomas D. Morison. London: Simpkin, Marshall & Co, 1890. First edition.


via: Books and Art

Update: The title of this post and the book I posted don’t match. Obviously, I wasn’t paying attention during the proofreading part of this posting. The book on display is: John Guidfollow; or the Murder of the Earl of Strathmore. I’ll post the book “Little Curiosity” tomorrow. I apologize for the mix-up.