The Lady of Shalott
Alfred Lord Tennyson, The Lady of Shalott. Manuscript on parchment, illuminated by Alberto Sangorski [London: For the Grolier Society, c. 1910]. Bound by Sangorski & Sutcliffe. (BRMS 187)
“Sangorski & Sutcliffe” was Britain’s foremost art binding firm during the early decades of this century. Founded in 1901 by the Polish émigré Francis Longinus Sangorski (1875–1912) and George Sutcliffe (1878–1943), both pupils of Cobden-Sanderson’s protégé Douglas Cockerell, the partnership began in 1905 to specialize in magnificent custom-made inlaid, gilt, and jeweled leather bindings. Some of their most lavish efforts were reserved for unique literary manuscripts such as this one, which was beautifully illuminated in a medievalizing Pre-Raphaelite style by the binder’s brother, Alberto Sangorski (1862–1932). The jewels featured in this opulent binding consist of eight opals surrounding a central garnet.