Cover, page edges, and ex libris
From The Little Princess and the Great Plot by Lina Eckenstein, illustrated by Dudley Heath. 1892, London: T. Fisher Unwin. 23h7178
Sometimes book designers are truly creative, even in earlier days of publishing. Many of you are used to seeing page edges that are golden (commonly referred to as gilt). But in this edition of the The Little Princess, the page edges are actually of the same blue design as the outside and inside cover. In doing so, it creates a seamless design–literally from cover to cover!
The other interesting paratextual item is the ex libris. It seems to have been owned by a ___ M. Knight. The number listed could possibly be the book’s number in the original owner’s collection. The motto underneath can be translated from Latin to mean “safely through caution” (apparently this is the same motto for the Duke of Devonshire, of the Cavendish family). It’s a little worn and damaged–but that’s part of it’s charm!