- (London: Essex House Press, 1905).
- quarter vellum with paper-covered boards
- Vol. I., vii, (i), (192) each chapter paginated separately; Vol.II, (221) pages
- ISBN: none
Price: $1,200.00 other currencies
Order Nr. 69830
Issued in an edition limited to 200 numbered copies on Batchelor hand-made paper, set in Endeavour type, with red and black inkings on the notes and staves (Crawford, 40), [with a further 5 copies on vellum]. Essex House Press Bibliography, p. 75. With bookplate, " From the library of Flora Lewis Marble and Louis Mills Marble No. 709." Discoloration to endpapers of both volumes due to the binder's glue, very minor wear to corners of the boards. Overall a fine set of this scarce Essex House Press production.
10 parts: Part 1: 'Songs of Praise', 40pp; Part 2: 'Songs of the Sea', 24pp: Part 3: 'Songs of Loyalty and the Love of the Land', 44pp; Part 4: 'Rounds and Catches', 32pp; Part 5: 'Songs of the Country and the Tilling of the Soil', 52pp; Part 6: 'Songs of Sport', 28pp; Part 7: 'Songs of the Tavern and the Vine', 20pp; Part 8 'Workshop Songs or Songs of the Crafts', 24pp; Part 9: 'Songs of Comradeship, Love, & Courtship', 76pp; Part 10: 'Miscellany of Song', 60pp; each with title page + 'Index of the Essex House Song Book', xxiv pages.
The music was cut by Paul Woodroffe (1875-1945), with a clear arrangement of verse, in an attempt to redress visually the drawing of modern music. The text is the result of many years of research and incorporates songs from ten categories, including songs of praise, loyalty and love of the land, the sea, rounds and catches, sport, workshop songs, love and courtship, the tavern and vine, and nonsense. This is the repertoire of Guild songs, sung after Wednesday suppers in Mile End or round the camp fire on river trips (Crawford, p.121). The Essex House Press (1898-1909) founded by C.R. Ashbee (1863-1942) was one of the premier private presses of the "English Nineties," espoused ideals of craftsmanship similar to those of William Morris, and retained the Albion handpresses and many of the Kelmscott personnel when Morris died in 1898. Ashbee considered the Song Book, after the Prayer Book of King Edward VII, the best book produced by the Press.
Charles Robert Ashbee (1863 - 1942) was an architect & designer and one of the leading exponents of the Arts & Crafts movement. He established the Guild and School of Handicraft in London in 1888 which he moved to Chipping Campden in Gloucestershire in 1902. The Essex House Press was part of the Guild and was set up when Ashbee acquired the printing presses of William Morris's Kelmscott Press after his death in 1896. Within 5 years, however, the oversupply of handmade furniture and jewellery to a limited local market led to the demise of the Guild and the Essex House Press in 1907. Ashbee's wife, Janet, survived him and died in 1961.