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Album of cuttings from illustrated envelopes and letters.
England, 1879-1891.
Physical Description:
1 volume (38 pages, plus blanks) ; 21 cm
Rare Books and Manuscripts
HE6239 .P53 1879+ Oversize
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Fund
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Copyright Status:
Copyright Not Evaluated
Drawings & Watercolors
Illustrated letters gained popularity between 1840 and 1850, and reappeared occasionally throughout the remainder of the century. They were issued by firms, designers, and, originally, by the post office itself, though they were also produced by amateur illustrators. The illustrated envelopes in this album consist of amateur illustrations, as opposed to mass marketed products. Satire was frequently the tone of the drawings -- as in this album -- though many illustrated envelopes later became vehicles for propaganda and more serious subjects. See "Envelope, illustrated" in Maurice Rickards. The Encyclopedia of Ephemera: A Guide to the Fragmentary Documents of Everyday Life for the Collector, Curator, and Historian. London: The British Library, 2000.
Bound in contemporary black half roan and dark blue-green cloth.
This album includes a variety of cuttings taken from illustrated envelopes and other letters. It includes 22 examples of illustrated envelopes as well as a number of letters without illustration, typically including the address of the recipient, occasionally re-written for legibility. The illustrations on the letters range widely: some include single figures or caricatures next to the address, written in a simple manner. Others are far more elaborate. One shows two well-dressed individuals walking along a boardwalk, with the address written on a poster on a nearby wall. Another shows a crowd of dogs surrounding the name of the recipient, and another includes a man sleeping, as the text of the address seems to appear in his dreams. In one a woman berates a man for flirting -- she threatens to hit him -- and in another a soldier threatens to shoot an outlaw, who hides behind a board bearing the address of the recipient. Postmarks (some drawn) are dated between 1879 and 1891
Subject Terms:
Caricatures and cartoons -- Great Britain.
Clothing and dress -- Great Britain -- 19th century.
English wit and humor, Pictorial.
Envelopes (Stationery)
Great Britain -- Social life and customs -- 19th century.
Ink drawings.
Pictorial envelopes.

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