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Doubleday has signed me to prepare a large Anchor paperback to contain all Blake’s Illuminated Works in monochromatic facsimile (plus the Job illustrations), with brief descriptive commentary on each plate. The aim is a price under ten dollars, for a working handbook. But the photography is to be of the best, and although each work will be reproduced in a single color, the plan calls for using as many as five different Blakean colors for the different works. Trim size will be 7 ⅛ × 10 ¼ inches; 352 pages. Nearly all the reproductions will be in exact size, with the smaller pictures sometimes doubled up two or more on a page. There will probably be a very slight reduction of the largest plates, America . . . Jerusalem.

The idea of trying to say what is going on in each illumination is, I realize, a mad one, and I know I’ll need help. Suggestions about baffling details or whole pictures will be welcome. I shall also welcome ideas as to which copies of particular works will reproduce best in one color. And if anyone has a superb set of photographs of any Illuminated Work, that could be borrowed, I shall be happy to be apprised.

Target date: spring (or fall) 1972 publication.

Reward for the best title suggestion. “Blake’s Illuminated Works Entire”?—“The Canon of &c &c”—“All In One . . . ”? Hard to find the right words.

Print Edition

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