[IRISH BINDINGS BY THE HILLINGDON BINDER]. The History of the Life of King Henry the Second and of the Age in which He Lived in Five Books. WITH: The Works [...] Formerly Printed Separately [...] with Some Other Pieces, Never Before Printed (TOGETHER FIVE VOLUMES). George Lord Lyttelton.
[IRISH BINDINGS BY THE HILLINGDON BINDER]. The History of the Life of King Henry the Second and of the Age in which He Lived in Five Books. WITH: The Works [...] Formerly Printed Separately [...] with Some Other Pieces, Never Before Printed (TOGETHER FIVE VOLUMES)
[IRISH BINDINGS BY THE HILLINGDON BINDER]. The History of the Life of King Henry the Second and of the Age in which He Lived in Five Books. WITH: The Works [...] Formerly Printed Separately [...] with Some Other Pieces, Never Before Printed (TOGETHER FIVE VOLUMES)
[IRISH BINDINGS BY THE HILLINGDON BINDER]. The History of the Life of King Henry the Second and of the Age in which He Lived in Five Books. WITH: The Works [...] Formerly Printed Separately [...] with Some Other Pieces, Never Before Printed (TOGETHER FIVE VOLUMES)
[IRISH BINDINGS BY THE HILLINGDON BINDER]. The History of the Life of King Henry the Second and of the Age in which He Lived in Five Books. WITH: The Works [...] Formerly Printed Separately [...] with Some Other Pieces, Never Before Printed (TOGETHER FIVE VOLUMES)
[IRISH BINDINGS BY THE HILLINGDON BINDER]. The History of the Life of King Henry the Second and of the Age in which He Lived in Five Books. WITH: The Works [...] Formerly Printed Separately [...] with Some Other Pieces, Never Before Printed (TOGETHER FIVE VOLUMES)
[IRISH BINDINGS BY THE HILLINGDON BINDER]. The History of the Life of King Henry the Second and of the Age in which He Lived in Five Books. WITH: The Works [...] Formerly Printed Separately [...] with Some Other Pieces, Never Before Printed (TOGETHER FIVE VOLUMES)
[IRISH BINDINGS BY THE HILLINGDON BINDER]. The History of the Life of King Henry the Second and of the Age in which He Lived in Five Books. WITH: The Works [...] Formerly Printed Separately [...] with Some Other Pieces, Never Before Printed (TOGETHER FIVE VOLUMES)
[IRISH BINDINGS BY THE HILLINGDON BINDER]. The History of the Life of King Henry the Second and of the Age in which He Lived in Five Books. WITH: The Works [...] Formerly Printed Separately [...] with Some Other Pieces, Never Before Printed (TOGETHER FIVE VOLUMES)
[IRISH BINDINGS BY THE HILLINGDON BINDER]. The History of the Life of King Henry the Second and of the Age in which He Lived in Five Books. WITH: The Works [...] Formerly Printed Separately [...] with Some Other Pieces, Never Before Printed (TOGETHER FIVE VOLUMES)
[IRISH BINDINGS BY THE HILLINGDON BINDER]. The History of the Life of King Henry the Second and of the Age in which He Lived in Five Books. WITH: The Works [...] Formerly Printed Separately [...] with Some Other Pieces, Never Before Printed (TOGETHER FIVE VOLUMES)
Fine Irish Bindings by the "Hillingdon Binder"

[IRISH BINDINGS BY THE HILLINGDON BINDER]. The History of the Life of King Henry the Second and of the Age in which He Lived in Five Books. WITH: The Works [...] Formerly Printed Separately [...] with Some Other Pieces, Never Before Printed (TOGETHER FIVE VOLUMES)

Dublin: Ad I-IV: George Faulkner, 1768-1772; Ad V: J. Williams, 1775, 1768. 5 vols. 8vo (8 1/4" x 5 1/2"). Contemporary Irish tree calf by the Hillingdon Binder: spines elaborately gilt tooled in six compartments with contrasting gilt lettered labels, boards with gilt rolled borders and gilt tooled edges, marbled endpapers (headcaps and spines with some wear, light scratches on boards here and there). All title-pages printed on thick paper. Paginated: [ii], 640, [15]; [ii], 683; [ii], 534, [26]; [ii], 6, 435, [7], xvi; vii, [1], 564. With the requisite engraved portrait of the author as frontispiece in vol. V. Inexplicably, in vol. I fols. B2-7 are partially sprung. Apart from some minor shelfwear, this is a beautiful set of Irish tree-calf bindings in unsophisticated state. Armorial bookplate of M.A. Taylor and bookplate "Bookplate: "Earl Vane / From the Library of the Rev. John Vane" in each volume. Very good. Item #3537

FINE IRISH TREE-CALF BINDINGS by the Hillingdon Binder, a workshop of extraordinary technical and artistic abilities, from which only two bindings are known; our binding shares the extremely distinctive tool that appears in the corners of the fabulous binding on Baskerville's 1769 Bible preserved in the Koninklijke Bibliotheek, The Hague (Shelfmark 163 B 9), for which see MacDonnell, Five Hundred Years of the Art of the Book in Ireland, cat. 44. The unmistakable ornament in the 3rd compartment of our binding is shared with the KB specimen, and is reproduced perfectly on the KB's wikimedia commons page. That our bindings exhibit three otherwise unknown and very distinctive tools is significant for students and scholars of the history of Irish bookbinding.

However, there is absolutely no information about the Hillingdon Binder in any of the literature consulted by us. Besides the KB binding, MacDonnell references only TWO other bindings by this shop:

1. Another copy of the 1769 Baskerville Bible, ex. Hon. Colin Tennant (sold Sotheby's 24 Nov. 1980, lot 23, now Private Collection, Ireland);
2. Prayer Book (8vo), Dublin: Hay, 1778, National Library of Ireland (17LO 2534/Bd) -- a meagre production that was likely executed a novice using some of the tools.

Similar tools on a binding "possibly by William Hallhead's Binder" are reproduced by Foot, Decorated Bindings in Marsh's Library, Dublin, fig. 2.7 (border ornaments composed of individual tools; cf. the 3rd compartment in the present binding). See also McDonnell-Healy no. 81 and plate LXIX (spiral ornament; cf. the 1st compartment in the present binding).

The Hillingdon Binder was apparently named by MacDonnell after the early owner of the KB binding: Lord Hillingdon, of Wakefield Lodge, Potterspury, Northampton, whose library was sold at Sotheby's 29 Feb. 1932.

Our copy has an extremely interesting PROVENANCE:
1. Armorial engraved bookplate of "M.A. Taylor" in each volume (crest: a leopard passant proper), i.e. Michael Angelo Taylor (1757-1834), MP for Poole an Durham, privy councillor in 1831, and referenced as "the father of the House of Commons." He inherited his father's fortune of GBP 180,000 in 1788. The connection between Taylor, Ireland, and the Vane family is strong. Against her family's wishes, he married Frances Anne (nee Vane) Taylor (1769-1821), daughter of Rev. Sir Henry Vane, 1st Bart. of Long Newton, Co. Durham, and sister of Sir Henry Vane-Tempest (1775-1834) who married the Countess of Antrim in 1799. COMMENT: Taylor was a great drinking and gambling buddy of "Prinny," the future George IV. Taylor challenged a codicil that had been added to his father's will, left unsigned when Sir Robert died in 1788, by means of which Sir Robert intended to gift GBP 65,000 to the University of Oxford. The University did not receive the money, with which it built the Taylor Institution, until 1835, a year after Michael Angelo's own death. There were no heirs, although Frances Anne is thought to have borne an illigitimate child at the age of fifteen. (SOURCES: ODNB, EB, DNB).
2. Rev. John Vane (1792-1871), a fascinating individual about whom much has been written by genealogists at Wrington, where Vane was Rector. This individual has been equated with Jack Vane, illegitimate son of Henry Vane-Tempest referenced above. Jack Vane was disliked and alienated by his family, but apparently he was befriended by Mr. and Mrs. Taylor referenced above, who included him in their will. Rev. John Vane was the Chaplain of the House of Commons while Taylor was an MP (see the Wrington Archive, "John Vane's Relatives," pp. 1-10, online); in later years he was Chaplain in Ordinary to the Queen. He was also a Freemason, and his death was announced in the Jan. 7, 1871 issue of The Freemason wherein he is addressed as a past Grand Chaplain.
3. Earl Vane; this individual is likely George (Stewart) Vane Tempest (1821-1884), first son of Charles Stewart (1778-1884), Marquess of Londonderry, with Frances Ann Vane-Tempest (the richest heiress in Britain). Charles Stewart was created Earl Vane and Baron Seaham, and these titles passed to his his son, in addition to that of the 5th Marquess of Londonderry. George may be the "Earl Vane" mentioned in John Vane's will, and his possible nephew (see the Wrington Archive "John Vane's Relatives," pp. 1-10, online).
4. Messrs. Rothwell & Dunworth (Dulverton, Somerset, UK) --> Michael Laird Rare Books.

ESTC T204678 (Life of King Henry II) and T79266 (Works).

Price: $4,500.00

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