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The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam, Bayntun Onlaid Binding, Hand Colored Illustrations



The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam

Translated by Edward Fitzgerald

Published by George Routledge, London circa 1900

Signed Bayntun-Riviere Onlaid Full Leather Binding

12 Hand-Colored Gilbert James Illustrations

Printed on Japanese Vellum

Exceptional Condition

Binding Details:  A stunning signed onlaid binding by Bayntun –Riviere, Bath, of full red French levant morocco leather. In the center of the front cover in various colors of morocco leather is one of the characters illustrated in the book that is contained within a panel frame of two fillets that is bordered with grapevines onlaid in green, purple, and brown morocco leather. The words "The Rubaiyat of" appearing at the top and "Omar Khayyam" at the bottom. The spine treatment consists of raised bands, gilt titling and ruling, and an onlaid treatment of leaves and grapes that replicate the front cover design. The doublures and flyleaves are made of red watered silk and all page ends are gold gilted.  The Bayntun -Riviere binder’s stamp appears in gilt on the bottom inside front cover. The book is housed in a dark green silk functional slipcase.

Book Details:  Originally published in 1859, The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam is the title that Edward FitzGerald gave to his translation of a selection of poems originally written in Persian by Omar Khayyan in the 11th century. Since then, its melancholy tone and enigmatic philosophy of mourning the painful brevity of life while celebrating what pleasures we may find have made it an inspiration to many writers. This edition published by George Routledge, London circa 1900 features twelve illustrations by Gilbert James all of which are beautiful hand-colored illustrations. The book is printed on Japanese vellum and measures approximately 8” x 5.5” with 160 pages.

Condition Report:  The binding is in FINE condition with no flaws. Internally, the book is very clean with no signs of previous ownership. Overall, this is an exceptional copy of a spectacular Bayntun-Riviere signed binding housing one of the all-time great classics.

Photographs of the binding, doublures, and an example of one of the hand-colored illustrations appear in the photo section of the listing.