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Illuminated version of Lord Tennyson’s Morte d’Arthur (1912)

Thursday 25 October 2012 at 11:34

Morte d’Arthur, a poem by Alfred Tennyson, written out and illuminated by Alberto Sangorski; 1912; Reproduced by the Graphic Engraving Co. for Chatto & Windus, London. Alfred Lord Tennyson’s Morte d’Arthur, written as early as the spring of 1835, was a retelling of the third, fourth and fifth chapters of the twenty-first book of Malory’s Romance about the legendary King Arthur, Guinevere, Lancelot, and the Knights of the Round Table. Tennyson later would incorporate a much extended and altered version of the poem into his The Idylls of the King, as the last section titled ‘The Passing of Arthur’. The illuminator Alberto Sangorski (1862-1932) was late to the world of calligraphy, at the age of 43 beginning to work for his younger brother Francis in the famous Sangorski and Sutcliffe bookbinding firm. One of his greatest achievements was a unique jewel bound version of Omar Khayyám’s Rubáiyát, now referred to as ‘the Great Omar,’ which never reached the American collector who commissioned it as it was sent across on the ill fated Titanic in 1912. The book is housed at the Internet Archive, donated by the University of Toronto. Hat-tip to Pinterest user Nancy Cooper. Sign up to get our [...]