Dick's Book of Alphabets Plain and Ornamental: Containing Elegant Ancient And Modern Designs For Plain And Fanciful Alphabets, Numerals And Illuminated Initial Letters For The Use Of Architects, Decorators, Designers, Draughtsmen &c
Oblong 4to, deep green cloth with decorative gilt title. No date, ca. 1866. 40 leaves: Title, half-title, 38 pages of alphabets numbered 3-40. Contents printed in alternating monochromatic red, blue, black, green, and sepia colors. Near Fine with a touch of rubbing to extremities. Founded by William Brisbane Dick (1827–1901) and Lawrence R. Fitzgerald (1826-1881), Dick & Fitzgerald began as primarily a publisher of songbooks and other areas of popular amusement, including ballroom dancing, astrology, card games and tricks, and diversified in the later 19th century into educational young adults' readers.
Although there was a long lineage of "Dick's Book of... [Readings and Recitations, Amusements, Toasts and Speeches, Palmistry, etc]," this "Book of Alphabets" has a distinctly more professional application and appearance that distinguishes it from the publisher's other series. Some of the alphabet styles are also unusual, including the "Crazy" plate, which has stylistic similarities to the lettering used in many of Prang's Christmas cards and chromos. Choice copy of a rare item, only 6 copies in OCLC.
Advertised by the publisher: Dick's Book of Alphabets. Containing a great variety of designs for plain and Fanciful Alphabets, Numerals and illuminated Initial letters in various colors, and elegant in style. It includes specimens of modern Ornamental designs, and of the ancient grotesque, Arabesque, and other eccentric devices for decoration and illumination, mainly gathered from rare old vellums and scarce books of past centuries. This work will be appreciated by Architects, Decorators, Designers, Draughtsmen, etc.