I cannot explain to you the thrill, for me, of encountering a genuine piece of Regency life. This book might have been read by one of my characters! (For I do visualize my characters as real Regency people.) This book was held by a person wearing a silk gown and a cap, or jean half-boots, or a tail coat and pantaloons. It might have been read in post-chaise, or a drawing room, or the Bath Pump Room. My mind reels with the possibilities.
|The printer is Wood and Innes of Poppin's Court, Fleet Street|
It is a small book--4 1/4 x 7 1/4 inches--with worn brown marbled covers and a brown leather spine and corner caps. The pages are foxed, and there is that indefinable old book smell that intoxicates book collectors. It is certainly legible, and no pages are missing.
And one more survivor--tucked into the pages of the book is a calling card. It is certainly Victorian, but I have no expertise in dating such ephemera.
I wonder what Margaret and Sharlet thought of Miss Edgeworth's stories. Did they have all three small brown volumes? And if so, when did the other two volumes become parted from this one?
An antique book tells two stories: the one printed on its pages, and the other--more mysterious--of its travels, and its owners.
'Til next time,