Wednesday, 18 December 2013

The Infant's Library - Georgian's Revealed Exhibition

At the Georgain's Revealed Exhibition at The British Library I fell in love with The Children's Library a collection of 17 small books published c.1800. They measure approximately 55mm by 45 mm. These tiny books are covered with pretty coloured paper. They are illustrated with woodcuts, some of which are hand-coloured. Originally they were contained in a box with a pink paper lining and a sliding front with "a pretty image of a glass-fronted bookcase".

The subjects of each book are diverse: the alphabet, reading and spelling, games for boys and girls, furniture and domestic items, etc.

Two of the books on display were open. The first two facing pages. Page 62 and 63 of the "History of England". A woodcut of "Our most gracious Sovereign George III" and another woodcut of "his amiable consort Queen Charlotte. The second book was open at a page with the text "I will practice a minuet, and when Harriet and Matilda come in the evening, they will dance to it." The woodcut is of a young girl practicing on a harpsichord.

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