Private Press Books
William Noble (1838-1912) assiduously collected the output of the great presses of his lifetime, from the Daniel Press's Hymni ecclesiae (1882), through the complete set of William Morris's Kelmscott Press publications (1891-1898), to an all but complete set of Lucien Pissarro's Eragny Press publications (1894-1914).
The Ashendene, Dun Emer/Cuala, Doves and Vale Presses are also well represented. Noble's contemporary, John Fraser (1836-1902, collected and sold Kelmscott Press titles, but retained the ephemera; his collection also complements Noble's in its holdings of books and ephemera from the Essex House Press (1898-1909).
The gift of books from the collection of Prof. Walter Lyon Blease (1884-1963) significantly enriches the Library's holdings of the great presses of the inter-war years, particularly the Golden Cockerel, Nonesuch, Shakespeare Head and Gregynog Presses. Other presses of this period, for example the Hogarth and Seizin Presses, are represented incidentally in the Graves collection. The Radcliffe Library contains almost 100 private press volumes, including works printed for the Cathedral by Bert Jackson's Lilac Tree Press at Wallasey and several with illustrations by Stephen Gooden, such as the Nonesuch Press Bible.
Purchases and gifts supplement and extend these collections, including works from later British and American presses such as Gwasg Gregynog, the Rampant Lions Press and the Whittington Press.
Arthur Gaskin's Good King Wenceslaus (1895)
Arthur Joseph Gaskin (1862-1928) was one of The Birmingham Group in the Arts and Crafts movement with strong links to William Morris and his Kelmscott Press. This work was printed in 125 copies only at The Birmingham Guild of Handicraft. SPEC JUV.566
Vale Press edition of John Keats, 1898
The special binding, in a severe rectilinear style illustrating Charles Ricketts's conception of the "Book Beautiful", was commissioned by William Noble, a Liverpool book collector. SPEC Y88.3.184