A complete copy - defying the author's suggestion

Stalker, J.

A treatise of Japaning and varnishing, being a compleat discovery of those arts.

Published 1688
Item ID 77925

excl. VAT

Oxford, John Stalker, 1688. Tall folio (37.4 x 23.5 cm). Title page, [viii] (dedication leaf, preface, errata, contents leaf), 84 pp.; 24 engraved plates. Contemporary full calf. Spine with five raised bands; boards with ruled double lines. Marbled endpapers.

The first edition of this comprehensive guide to Japanese lacquering techniques of the period. The suite of 24 plates by an anonymous artist includes 60 designs of flowers, birds, insects, and landscapes in the oriental manner, suitable for furniture and small objects. Surviving copies are often incomplete due to artisan-owners having removed patterns for use as transfers, at the author's own suggestion. Although it had been preceded by William Salmon's Polygraphie, or the Arts of Drawing, Engraving ... Varnishing, Gilding... (1672), Stalker's manual was to remain for a considerable time the principal reference work in the West for Japanese lacquering techniques. This is the variant noting only Stalker as author (there are three other variant titles: two indicating the joint authorship of Stalker and Parker, and one with Parker's name alone). Provenance: tiny bookplate, "ex libris H. P. K." in the top outer corner of the front pastedown. Boards and spine with the usual signs of wear; ancient re-backing of the spine; marginal repairs to G and G2; a few plates with mild discoloration; Plates 9, 10, 21, and 22 with small repairs; otherwise an excellent copy. Wing, S5187C.

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