Arion. Sammlung auserlesener Gesangstücke mit Begleitung des Pianoforte.
Leipzig: Robert Crayen, n.d. (c. 1830). Two oblong octavo volumes comprising seven parts. (118); (120); (122); (122); (120); 120; (ii), 120; (iv), (124)pp. A collection of sheet music and lyrics for pianoforte gathered from a variety of composers, including Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven. This set features wrap-around fore-edge paintings by modern British artist Clare Brooksbank on both volumes depicting an interior view of a European opera house. The first volume shows the view from the seats looking toward the stage with the crowd seated; the second volume shows the view in the lobby area with the crowd standing, perhaps at intermission. Lining the upper edges of these scenes are a total of twelve portraits of great composers: there are, in addition to Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven, portaits of Tchaikovsky, Strauss, Purcell, Handel, Schubert, Wagner, Chopin, Vivaldi, and Bach. Brooksbank’s work is not usually signed, but this set bears her initials at the bottom left corner of each painting. The set is in a contemporary binding by Charles Hering of green morocco with gilt lyre device in the center of both covers framed by a tooled floral motif. The lyre device is repeated in three spine compartments. German-born Hering built one of the pre-eminent binderies in London’s West End and was quite active during the late 18th and early 19th century. His work is described by Dibdin as having “strength, squareness and good style.” Set attractively housed in leather-backed drop-back box. Front hinge of both volumes expertly repaired. Occasional spotting throughout and light wear to extremities, else nearly fine. Overall, an attractive set in an unusual format, with an an ambitious and accomplished fore-edge painting. Item #24128