London: Constable & Co., 1917. First trade edition. First trade edition. Octavo (9 15/16 x 7 1/2 inches; 253 x 190 mm.). Collating xi, , 250, , [1, blank]. Publisher's ribbed green cloth, front cover pictorially stamped and lettered in gilt, spine decoratively lettered in gilt, pictorial end-papers. Slight discoloration on free end-papers (from paste-downs). Upper cover corners a little bumped, small armorial bookplate on verso of front free end-paper, neat ink inscription dated 1917 on half-title. Twelve mounted color plates, including frontispiece, with captions on mounts. Forty-three black and white drawings. A Very Good copy.
"…it was during these years that he illustrated a new Brothers Grimm title, Little Brother and Little Sister which is in effect one of his crowning achievements. In these twelve colour plates we find the most astonishing versatility of style, and an exquisite pitch of execution. The style ranges from the delicate to the virtual burlesque caricature. On the one hand is an example of pre-Raphaelite, infinitely tender portrayals of womanhood, such as 'The True Sweetheart', or the delicate realism of Maid Maleen and her waiting woman escaping from the terrible tower of her father. Yet within the same book we find the classic Rackhamerie of the gnome with his beard caught in the cleft of the semi- anthropomorphized tree, appealing to Rose-red and Snow-white for help and the Hassell-like custard-pie of the three soldiers and the long nose. This is one of the few books illustrated by Rackham from which it would be possible to select any single-colour picture in order to demonstrate Rackham's art at its finest" (Gettings 116-117).
Latimore and Haskell 47. Riall 129. Gettings 178. (Item #3722)