In Chimney Corners. Merry Tales of Irish Folk Lore

by Seumas MacManus

illustrated by Pamela Colman Smith

Doubleday & McClure Co., New York, 1899

Here is the earliest book I have with illustrations by Pamela Colman Smith. First off, the cover shots:

The first thing of course to notice is that dratted duct tape! I'll be working on getting it off so we all can see the "rest of the picture" and if there is anything special on the spine. This was an ex-library book and for being more than 100 years old, is in mighty fine shape. Some of the pages are cracking a bit but the illustrations are in wonderful shape.

Here's what the whole cover looks like. I found another copy of the book.

Next we come to the frontis-piece and title page:


The colors on this first illustration are very vivid (as they all are). Already we can see the flowing line that distinguishes Pamela's artwork The color illustration is from the last tale in the book The Giant of the Band Beggar's Hall - "So the Giant Blew a Whistle". On the title page we can see the period/dot after the title that shows up in the titles of the Tarot Majors and Court Cards.

The next illustrations are from Billy Beg and the Bull - "She Consulted with a Hen Wife" and "The Hen Wife's Ducks".

Note the castle in the background and the patterned dress.

The next illustrations are from the story Murroghoo-More and Murroghoo-Beg - those named characters:


Now comes the tale of the Queen of the Golden Mines and the illustration "Then Jack Went into the Castle" Click here to read this story:


In the story Shan Ban and Ned Flynn, the illustration of "What Does He See but the Fairy" appears:


The Black Bull has the illustration of "When the Prince Returned He Demanded the Keys":


Rory the Robber shows the illustration of "Of Course a Dance was Started":


Next, in Nanny and Conn, comes the illustration of "There was the Dirtiest and Wrinkledest Old Woman":


The Apprentice Thief has a line drawing of '"Now Billly Brogan," says the King':


In Manis the Besom Man there is a line drawing of "It's a half-crown, by the toss o' war!":


The final color illustration is from Jack and the King, "Ye Never Saw More Wonderful Beanstalks". There is also a line drawing of "The Queeny Bee":


The very last line drawing is from Giant of Band Beggar's Hall, "The Fish Wagging Their Tails" (which is also appropriately titled a 'tailpiece'):


And that's the set of illustrations from this book. I should get around to reading it, but it just arrived and I'll update this page when I get through it.

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