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A note on the ‘Virtual Facsimile’ of THE SLUMBERING VIRGIN

While considered to be the second book issued from the Gogmagog Press, THE SLUMBERING VIRGIN was the first book to have the Gogmagog imprint.  The text was ‘drawn up’ (apparently both text and images) in 1938 and was revised before printing began in 1958.  As most Gogmagog Press books use images designed after 1957, this book, with apparently contemporaneous text and images from the 1930s,  is unusual (tho it is difficult to know how much the aesthetics of the 1950s affected the final outcome).

     Forty-five copies were produced (although some sources say there were 50), 30 on cream wove paper, and 15 on a ‘superior’ Hollingworth white wove paper.  The prints are all original elimination linocuts (where a block is printed, cut more, and printed again several times in succession, each time a darker color being added to the print).   One interesting note: the proof sheets used were printed on the two different types of paper used for the edition.  The differences can be seen clearly in the images that follow, the lighter color being the paper for the ‘ordinary’ copies, and the darker for the 15 ‘superior’ copies.

     This ‘Virtual Facsimile’ of THE SLUMBERING VIRGIN does not reproduce a book, but the entire text and all the illustrations from proof sheets.  This has enabled quite clean scans, as the sheets could be placed flat in the scanner (where a book could not).  Obviously, since these are sheets only, no binding is present to reproduce - normally not a great loss - but the bindings of Gogmagog books are as much a part of the experience of the objects as the texts and images.  Also, while a true ‘facsimile’ would contain ‘everything’, certain sacrifices (i.e. the half-title, the limitation page, the colophon, etc.) have been made to save loading time for the viewer.

 Special thanks to Colin Franklin for contributing the proof sheets used in this reproduction. - BH/03

THE SLUMBERING VIRGIN (text and images) are Copyright 2003 by the Trustees of the Morris Cox Estate.  All reproduction rights remain with the Morris Cox Estate.