- Museum number
Good Words for1860. Edited by Norman Macleod, D. D. And Illustrated by J. B., J. D. Watson, J. Wolf, F. Walker, and others. London: Alexander Strahan and Co., 32 Ludgate Hill, 1860. Edinburgh: Thomas Constable, printer to the Queen and to the University. 796p. [The illustrations are placed within the text throughout.] The illustrators not on the title page are listed as [full names where possible]: J. O. Brown, Jas. Archer, Jas. Drummond, Erskine Nicol, Richard Principal Leitch, Samuel Bough, A.J. Symington [possibly Andrew James Symington], John Keeley Halswelle, Clark Stanton, William Quiller Orchardson, J. L. Porter, Gourlay Steell, Hughes Taylor, Charles Altamont Doyle, Robert Herdman, Clarence Dobell. Several of the engraving are signed “F. Borders Sc.” The note by the Editor on page 796 reflects the purpose of the magazine. The illustration on page 200 is after Jas. Archer, signed bottom left and accompanies the poem: “A cloister legend”. The illustrations on page 313 and page 353 are after Halswelle, signed bottom left, accompanying the text of “Lady Somerville’s maidens”. The illustration on page 616 is after C. A. Doyle, accompanying the text of “Mistakes”. The illustration on page 790 is after C. A. Doyle, accompanying the poem: “The Christmas tree”. Robin de Beaumont’s notes regarding this copy are on the front endpaper verso.
Binding: Text sewn on three tapes. Gilt edges. Bevelled boards. Yellow endpapers and pastedowns. Purple wave vertical-grain cloth. The same design is blocked on both covers. A single fillet blocked in blind on the borders forms a “rule frame”. On the corners and the sides, patterns of stems, leaves and flower buds are blocked in blind. On the centre of the upper cover, the title: “/ Good/ Words/ 1860/”, are blocked in gold, in “floral” letters. The same lettering is blocked on the centre of the lower cover, in blind. The spine is blocked in gold and in blind. A single fillet is blocked in blind on the perimeter. From the head downwards, the decoration is: stylised plant decoration, blocked in blind; the words: “Good/ Words/ Edited By/ Norman Macleod D. D./” are blocked in gold. On the lower half of the spine, a diamond is formed by two fillets, blocked in gold; the diamond is surrounded by stylised plant decoration, blocked in blind; within the diamond, amidst plant decoration, the words: “/ With/ Illustrations//” are blocked in gold. The year: “/1860/” is blocked in gold at the tail.
- Production date
Height: 248 millimetres
Thickness: 52 millimetres
Width: 180 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- From: Gleeson White pages 44 to 55
This popular, semi-religious, sixpenny magazine, estab¬lished in 1860 achieved quickly a circulation that was record-breaking in its time. Edited by Dr. Norman Macleod, it was printed by Thomas Constable, and published (at first) in Edinburgh by Alexander Strahan and Co. Al¬though, viewed in the light of its later issues, one cannot help feeling disappointed with the first volume, yet even there the pictures are distinctly interesting as a forecast, even if they do not call for any detailed notice by reason of their intrinsic merit. They rarely exceed a half page in size, and were engraved none too well by various crafts¬men. Indeed, judging from the names of the artists, then as afterwards, given fully in the index of illustrations, it might not be unfair to blame the engravers still more strongly. The very fact that the illustrations are duly ascribed in a separate list is proof that, from the first, the editor recognised their importance. Such honourable re¬cognition of the personality of an illustrator is by no means the rule, even in periodicals that have equal right to be proud of their collaborators. Where the artists' names are recorded it is rare to find them acknowledged so fully and thoroughly as in Good Words. In other magazines they are usually referred to under the title of the article they illustrate and nowhere else; or their name is printed (as in Once a Week) with a bare list of numerals showing the pages containing their pictures; but in Good Words the subject, titles, and artists' names have always been accorded a special index.
In the first volume, for 1860, W. Q. Orchardson—not then even an Associate of the Royal Academy—supplies nine •drawings, engraved by F. Borders. Admirable in their own way, one cannot but feel that the signature leads one toexpect something much more interesting; and, knowing the quality of Mr. Orchardson's later work, it is impossible to Avoid throwing the blame on the engraver. Keeley Halswelle contributes six; in these you find (badly drawn or spoilt by I lie engraver) those water-lilies in blossom, which in after years (came a mannerism in his landscape foregrounds. J. W. M 'Whirter has four—one a group of Autumn Flowers (p. 664), cut by R. Paterson, that deserves especial notice as a much inure elaborate piece of engraving than any other in the volume. Erskine Nicol supplies two genre pieces, the fullpage, Mary Macdonell and her friends (p. 216), being, most probably, a thoroughly good sketch, but here again the translator has produced hard scratchy lines that fail to suggest the freer play of pencil or pen, whichever it was that produced the original. Others by 'J. B.,' J. 0. Brown, C. A. Doyle, Clarence Dobell, Jas. Drummond, Clark Stanton, Gourlay Steel and Hughes Taylor, call for no particular comment.
- Not on display
- Associated titles
Associated Title: Lady Somerville's Maidens.
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number