A Decree of the Star Chamber Concerning Printing,. Made July 11, 1637. With an Introduction and notes by members of the Grolier Club.
(NY: Grolier Club, 1884). 6 x 9. (93) pages. Bound in green straight grain morocco richly gilt floral tools on pointille grounds with a central medallion, corner pieces, and floral borders on 4 sides that allude to the floral borders of the original Japan vellum wraps (which are bound in at the rear). All board edges are tooled with gold dots; wide turn-ins have a different floral border; a central brown calf panel is inlaid with the Grolier Club seal as it appears on the title page in red, blue, & gold. The panel is stamp signed "Bound by R. W. Smith Finished by F. Mansell." Very slight wear, near fine. Item #18130
This book was bound before 1895 by the Club Bindery's first employees, Smith & Mansell. It would have been commissioned by one of the 16 original shareholders in the Club Bindery, as they alone were allowed the use of the Bindery at first. In December 1922 the book was sold at Anderson Galleries, lot 457 in the Library of the Late Henry Cady Sturges, for $77 to "Brick" (probably the Brick Row Bookshop). Sturges was a member of The Grolier Club from 1889 to 1916. This book appears again at Anderson Galleries in April 1930, lot 103 in Private Press Books from the Library of David Randall including Rare Vellum copies of the Ashendene, Doves, & Kelmscott Press. (As an aside, Randall was employed by the Brick Row Bookshop from 1929 to 1931.) It sold for $75.We have not been able to determine the purchaser, as the heirs wish to be anonymous. The purchaser died in the 1970s, and his heirs sold this Star Chamber in 2018. Copies of both Anderson Gallery auctions are included with the book.
No. 49 of 148 numbered copies on Holland paper, printed by DeVinne. The first publication of the Grolier Club. Asaf 1.