The binding is by far the most interesting feature if this otherwise unassuming mid-century American edition of Cowper. It may have been bound in New York at the instance of Harpers, but as the front free endpapers of each volume carry the small blind stamp of Hugh Scobie, Toronto, it is possible that a Canadian binder was responsible. Scobie (1811-53) epitomised the Scottish emigrant who built the British Empire. In 1838, he founded, in Toronto, The Scotsman, one of the earliest newspapers to obtain wide circulation in British Canada. In its first number, he advertised his services as a 'bookseller, stationer, printer, bookbinder, lithographer, copperplate and woodengraver'. If these volumes were actually bound by the house of Hugh Scobie, they would add a piece of evidence for the early history of bookbinding in Canada. With contemporary inscription 'for Isabella, Christmas 1850'.
Author COWPER (William)
Date c. 1850
Binding attractively bound in full contemporary black morocco, richly gilt decorated to rococo designs on sides, spines gilt decorated and lettered, gilt edges, cream endpapers wirh cross and diagonal dot design,
Publisher Harper and Brothers, New York,
Illustrator with 75 wood engraved illus. in text by John S. and Tudor Horton after John Gilbert,
Condition slight staining of some upper margins in Vol. I, endpapers spotted but a nice copy with advert leaf at beginning.
Pages 2 vols, pp.342 & 344,