London: Macmillan and Co., 1906. [Fantasy tales]. FIRST EDITION. Octavo (21 x 14cm), pp.306; 10 (ads, dated 15.8.06). With 20 black and white illustrations by H.R. Millar. Elegantly hand-bound in burgundy half oasis morocco over original cloth sides gilt with elephant medalion to upper, top edge gilt, spine gilt-lettered in six compartments with raised bands. Kipling's popular series of tales set in different historical eras, including Roman Britain, Anglo-Saxon England, The Norman Conquest, The Middle Ages and the Tudor Period. The stories are all told to two children living near Pevensey, East Sussex, by characters magically plucked out of history by 'Puck'. Traditionally the term 'Puck' referred to a malicious spirit or demon of popular superstition, and from the 16th century the name of a mischievous goblin (or Hobgoblin), similar to that appearing in Shakespeare's 'A Midsummer Night's Dream', the fairy scene from which is acted out here. Although 'Puck' is seen as a children's book, (in the same way 'Treasure Island' or 'King Solomon's Mines' are viewed), the story-tellers are adults and the romances they describe would only be suitable for older readers. Item #49298
Stewart . Bleiler; Checklist of Fantastic Literature (277). BMC No.1; 'Edwardian Children's Books'. Oxford Companion to English Lit. p537, 797.
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