Red morocco album compiled by Macnaghten in 1895/6 whilst living in Brussels, filled with a splendid array of watercolours, pen and ink drawings, manuscript verses and humorous greetings contributed by various friends and well-wishers. Of particular note, is the inclusion of a wonderful drawing on card by the noted Belgian artist and illustrator Emile Puttaert (1829-1901) depicting a stream running through a forest. This is laid in without using adhesive and can be freely removed from the album for inspection. The binding is firm, although the boards and spine are in poor condition with splitting and loss. The home-made dustwrapper, with a watercolour of a dancer to the front panel and the initials E.M.M. to the rear, is tatty with tears and loss. The contents with minor occasional marks, one or two tipped in entries removed, and two removed pages are otherwise in good order. The artwork is clean and bright.

A very well-filled album containing some fantastic, accomplished artwork. Particular highlights include: an unusual full-page watercolour of hell, depicting mischievous, playful imps dancing around the flames; two other separate ink drawings of imps; a wonderful stylised watercolour of the devil painted in reds, oranges and gold; a watercolour of a jaunty ringmaster in a red tailcoat signed Dudley Beaumont (likely the artist and army officer, 1877-1918); a coloured drawing titled 'A Remembrance of Hindoostan, 1894' depicting two bullocks pulling a carriage, the window forming a flap lifting to reveal the couple inside; a watercolour of a woman on a bicycle; and an ink drawing of 'The New Widow' - another female cyclist, now liberated and using her husband's funeral wreaths as wheels. The vast majority of the contributors are women, and together the album forms an interesting insight into the social circle of an English woman in Belgium in the late nineteenth century. Indeed, alongside more commonplace drawings of flowers we find everything from occultist imagery to emancipated female cyclists. Provenance: From the library of Martin Stone.

Stock code: 17114


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