The Bibliomania, or Book Madness. Containing Some Account of the History, Symptoms, and Cure of This Fatal Disease.
Provenance: Francis Kettaneh, with his leather book label.
In Bibliomania (1809), Thomas Frognall Dibdin describes eight lustful symptoms found in the bibliomaniac. This copy satisfies at least half of them, being large paper, uncut, extra-illustrated, and unique. Its 180 portraits include engravings and India proofs of notables such as Dugdale, Erasmus, Shakespeare, Aldus, Boswell, and Dryden, as well as the distinguished bibliophiles John, Duke of Roxburghe, Topham Beauclerk, Hans Sloane, and others. And this copy’s large-paper margins are almost comically wide.A reprint of the 1809 first edition, this is the one— and only—publication issued by the obscure Club of Odd Sticks, founded in New York in 1864 by Americana collector Francis Suydam Hoffman. The binder, William Matthews (1822–96), was not only highly accomplished in his craft but also a notable bibliophile in his own right; both he and Francis Kettaneh were members of the Grolier Club.