The Pencil of Nature by William Henry Fox Talbot
Da Capo Press Edition, 1969
Near FINE Condition
This is a beautiful copy of the 1969 facsimile edition (with tipped-in plates and tissue guards) of William Henry Fox Talbot's classic treatise on the story of the discovery of the negative-positive photographic process “The Pencil of Nature” published by Da Capo Press, New York in 1969. The first edition of Fait was originally published in 1844, in a limited number of copies; 'The Pencil of Nature' is now an exceedingly rare and invaluable document. Only twenty-four copies are known to exist, most being incomplete or containing badly faded prints of the photographs. This Da Capo Press edition is an exact facsimile of the original; it contains Talbot's outline of his investgations, all twenty-four photographs (reproduced from the best extant prints), and his notes on each individual photograph. In addition, Beaumont Newhall, Director of the George Eastman House and widely acknowledged to be the world's foremost authority on the history of photography, has provided a new introduction to this edition. From the introduction, “'The Pencil of Nature' is a classic. It is a collection of paper photographs made by the inventor of the process, William Henry Fox Talbot, with his account of the discovery and prediction of uses to which it might be put. It is the first book illustrated with photographs and the first mass production of photographs. It stands in relation to the history of photography as does the Gutenberg Bible to printing".
Measuring 7” x 9.5” and containing 24 plates tipped onto stiff pages with glassine guards and a facsimile prospectus for the original book tipped onto the front free endpaper, the book is bound in maroon cloth boards with a photographically illustrated dust jacket. The book is in FINE condition. The dust jacket is in Near FINE+ condition with minimal wear at the head and foot of the spine and is protected with a mylar cover.
A photograph of the book appear in the photo section of the listing. Please note that the white that appears on the top of the book and along the spine is a reflection from the mylar covering. The actual color is the same as the rest of the cover.