Original Stephen Gooden line engraving.
Very fine proof impression of this scarce bookplate. This bookplate was made as an exclusive commissioned work and no proofs were published for outside sale.
This elaborate and beautifully engraved bookplate was one of Stephen Gooden's final engravings. Gooden had already designed and engraved a smaller format bookplate for the Royal College of Surgeons of England in 1951; however, this larger format plate was to be one of the finest designs of his mature work as an engraver.
Stephen Gooden was the most accomplished line engraver of his time. He illustrated a number of books, among them The Nonesuch Press Bible, The Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám, The Fables of La Jean de la Fontaine, George Moore's The Brook Kerith, and Aesop's Fables. In addition, Stephen Gooden was the foremost engraver of pictorial bookplates in England during his lifetime, producing over forty notable bookplates, including a number for The Royal Family, and was the official designer to the Bank of England.
An example of this engraving and Gooden's original sketch for this work were bequeathed by Sir Geoffrey Keynes (who owned a comprehensive collection of Stephen Gooden's works) to the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge (object nos.P.390a-1985 and PD.241-1985).
On cream wove paper, with full margins and deckle edge. Mild mat line in outer margins, otherwise very fine original condition. Image surface excellent.