London: Goddard & Co., no date [1872-1873]. [Part-Song Collection] SIGNED FIRST EDITIONS, with two significant associated inscriptions. Two six-part series bound as one volume. Large octavo (27 x 19cm). SIGNED by the composer in blue ink to title page of each Part Song. Additionally INSCRIBED in pencil to the composer's sub-conductor of the Royal Albert Hall Choral Society, Charles John Hargitt (1833-1918), to 'Omnipotent Lord' and 'The Farewell.' Contemporary burgundy quarter morocco with gilt titles to spine, and gilt legend 'From the Composer' to matching cloth over boards. All edges speckled red. Illustrated monogram bookplate of Dr. C.J. Peacock, a notable Tunbridge Wells book-collector, to front pastedown, including a 'book curse.' A subsequent black ink gift inscription to fly-leaf detailing transfer from the sculptor, artist, and picture-restorer Henry Thomas 'Dover' Schafer (1854-1921) to Tunbridge Wells resident Mahala Camilleri (died 1970), dated 1921. An additional (slightly erroneous) description of provenance in blue ink to a loose sheet of card signed by Mahala, including a description of Schafer's career. Erroneous description of provenance in pencil partially erased to rear pastedown. Light toning and spotting throughout. Some tape burns to first title page; second title page torn right across horizontally, with tape repairs to verso. Light rubbing and bumping to boards. Head, tail, and joints of spine heavily rubbed. Very good. A complex chain of provenance has been slightly confused by one owner, Mahala Camilleri, who notes that the collection was inscribed by the eminent French composer M. Gounod to a 'Marquis de Margett.' The pencil name is actually that of C.J. Hargitt, sub-conductor of the Royal Albert Hall Choral Society during Gounod's tenure as the director of the society from 1871 to 1874. Hargitt retired to Tunbridge Wells in 1904, allowing the volume to very briefly enter the collection of Dr. Peacock, who leaves his delightful bookplate, and then swiftly pass from the picture-restorer Schafer to Camilleri, who kept it safe for nearly fifty years. Item #57353
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