First edition, an out-of-series copy of the deluxe issue of 50 copies specially printed on Japan vellum, inscribed by Johnson to the designer of the book.
"Pirates, Buccaneers, Marooners, those cruel but picturesque sea wolves who once infested the Spanish Main, all live in present-day conception in great degree as drawn by the pen and pencil of Howard Pyle."
This posthumous collection of Pyle's work on pirates celebrates the influence of the artist on our popular imagination, which is still felt today in the mainstream iconography of pirates: David Cordingly names this book as one of the works that "no doubt helped to fix the image in people's minds" of the black flag with the white skull and crossbones. This copy is inscribed by the compiler to the book's designer: "Extra special copy / for A.W. Rushmore / Whose job suits his name / And who gets away with it -- / As this volume – which reflects / his effort as much as mine -- / will testify – Amen -- / Merle Johnson / Aug 22 – 1921." An excellent association.
Read more: Cordingly, Under the Black Flag: The Romance and Reality of Life Among the Pirates.
New York & London: Harper & Brothers, 1921. 12.5'' x 9.5''. Original quarter cream cloth, grey paper boards, spine lettered in gilt, front board lettered in dark grey with full-color pirate vignette tipped onto board and framed by dark grey double-rule, single gilt rule to both boards, all edges uncut. Illustrated by Pyle with 36 full-page tipped-in plates (12 color), three tipped-in vignettes (2 color), and more than two dozen pen-and-ink vignettes throughout text. , xviii, 247,  pages. Inscribed by Johnson on the limitation page. Light foxing and toning to spine and edges of binding, a bit of rubbing to cover illustration, bumping to corners. Interior a touch toned.
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