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Poems by Robert Burns, Custom Scottish "Wheel Binding" by Andrew Sims



Poems, Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect by Robert Burns

1909 Facsimile of the Original 1786 Kilmarnock Edition

Published by D. Brown & Co., Kilmarnock, Scotland in 1909

Custom 18th Century Scottish "Wheel Binding" by the Sims Bindery

Exceptional Condition

Binding Details:  Stunning period binding by the Sims Bindery of full hand-dyed dark red morocco leather elaborately gold-tooled to a traditional eighteenth century “Scottish Wheel” design that is a beautiful modern-day homage to Scottish binding when it was at its height in terms of design and finishing.  The considerable labor involved in producing such bindings has changed little in three centuries with this particular example requiring in excess of 500 individual impressions created by 45 different finishing tools.  The binding also features raised bands to the spine, inner dentelles, and gold gilted board edges and headcaps. There are also hand-sewn silk headbands, period marbled endpapers, and the top page ends are gold gilted. Laid into the book is a signed card from Andrew Sims stating that the book was bound by the Sims Bindery.  The book is housed in a custom leather and marbled paper drop-back box with raised bands and gold gilt titling within a red leather tile on the spine.

Book Details:  This is a 1909 facsimile of the original 1786 Kilmarnock Edition of Poems, Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect by Robert Burn published D. Brown & Co., Kilmarnock, Scotland from photogravure blocks under the supervision of D. M’Naught, Esq., Editor of “The Burns Chronicle”. Poems, Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect commonly known as the Kilmarnock volume or Kilmarnock edition, is a collection of poetry by Robert Burns, first printed and issued by John Wilson of Kilmarnock on 31 July 1786. It was the first published edition of Burns' work. It cost 3 shillings and 612 copies were printed. The Kilmarnock volume contained, besides satire, a number of poems like "Halloween" (written in 1785), "The Twa Dogs" and "The Cotter's Saturday Night," which are vividly descriptive of the Scots peasant life with which he was most familiar; and a group like "Puir Mailie" and "To a Mouse", which, in the tenderness of their treatment of animals, revealed one of the most attractive sides of Burns' personality.

The book measures 9.25” x 6” with 240 pages that includes a preface, table of contents, and a glossary.

Condition Report:  The binding is in FINE condition. Internally, the book is very clean with no signs of previous ownership. The book was issued with uncut pages and as a result some of the pages have right side margins that are different in size. Overall, this is a beautiful binding example of an eighteenth century “wheeled binding” by Andrew Sims that houses a facsimile of Robert Burns first book of poetry published in the eighteenth century that elevates Burns’ poems into a true work of art.

Photographs of the binding, endpapers, and signed binder’s card appear in the photo section of the listing.