DUREL, John (editor) [Queen's Binder B]
[FINE BINDING]. Liturgia, seu liber precum communium, et administrationis sacramentorum,
aliorumque rituum atque ceremoniarum ecclesiae, juxta usum ecclesiae Anglicanae una cum Psalterio seu Psalmis Davidis, ea functatione distinctis, qua cantari aut Recitari debent in Ecclesiis. London : excudit Rogerus Nortonus, regius in Latinis, Græcis & Hebraicis typographus; væneuntque apud Sam. Mearne, regium bibliopolam in Vico vulgariter dicto Little-Britain, 1670. Octavo, fine English ‘drawer-handle’ binding of elaborate gilt-ornamentation over red calf, expertly rebacked, enhanced with extensive floriation and pointille decoration, spine in six compartments with alternating floral tooling, all edges gilt, marbled endpapers (wax seal on rear pastedown), unpaginated, a couple of minor ink stains, else very good.
Second edition of this English Book of Common Prayer, first published in 1669, one of two variant imprints from 1670. A handwritten note on the preliminary blank states ‘See similar binding Maggs cat. #803 – No 62’.
‘The second half of the seventeenth century is a period which is widely recognised and documented as a zenith of achievement in English bookbinding, when the great workshops of the Restoration era produced bindings of intricate beauty and craftsmanship’ (Pearson, English Bookbinding Styles 1450 – 1800, p. 68). This English Book of Common Prayer is bound in a lavish ‘drawer-handle’ style binding, the height of taste of the period. This example displays the floriated tooling closely associated with the Queen’s Binder B.
For similar, see Pearson (ibid.) 3.80 and Nixon, Five centuries of English Bookbinding no. 42.
Robert Bransby Cooper (1762–1845), of Furney Hill, Dursley, Gloucestershire, his name inscribed on the preliminary blank, dated 1782, and at the head of the title page. Bransby Cooper was the son of Rev. Samuel Cooper, a clergyman of the Church of England and Maria Susanna Bransby, the author of several novels, and brother to noted surgeon Astley Cooper. He served as MP for Gloucester from 1818 to 1830. An earlier inscription on the preliminary blank, ‘Mr. Bransby’, suggests the book may have originally belonged to James Bransby, of Shottisham, Norfolk (fl. 1725-1745), Robert Bransby Cooper’s maternal grandfather (Maria’s father). The book was handed down by Robert Bransby Cooper to his son, Purnell Bransby Purnell, formerly Cooper (1791–1866), of Stancombe Park, Dursley; it is inscribed by him on the title page ‘Purnell Purnell Ch.Ch College 1810’. Born Purnell Bransby Cooper, his name was legally changed to Purnell Bransby Purnell (his mother’s maiden name) by Royal Licence in 1805. Purnell was a lawyer who served as County Chairman of the Gloucestershire Quarter Sessions; he was also an antiquarian, noted for his collection of Greek and Roman antiquities.