Posted by John Bidwell
Monday, September 19, 2011 11:57:00 AM
Bible. O.T. Psalms. The Book of Psalms [London?: s.n., ca. 1890]. Purchased on the Gordon N. Ray Fund, 2011.
The Pre-Raphaelite painter Sir Edward Burne-Jones was never not in love. The last of his great passions was for Helen Mary Gaskell, recipient of hundreds of letters and a trove of drawings now in the Ashmolean Museum. He also made for her this Book of Psalms, bound in white vellum with a gouache painting of King David on the front cover framed by extracts of Psalm 148 lettered in gilt. This is one of at least four vellum bindings he decorated for his women friends and is a prime example of the medievalizing bookwork he undertook under the influence of his friend William Morris.