London and Glasgow: Blackie & Son Limited, . Original blue cloth (5 5/8 inches tall) with gilt title, illustrated endpapers, original dust jacket. Fine. Item #1022
"LET EVERYTHING THAT HATH BREATH PRAISE THE LORD" Lovely mid-century retrospective of the great English hymns of the Victorian era—illustrated for younger readers by Cicely Mary Barker. Nineteenth-century England was notable for "first, the number of women who wrote hymns, and secondly, the increasing attention given to hymns for children" (Arthur Pollard). Mrs. Cecil Frances Alexander—perhaps the most prominent female hymnist of the era—is "one of the women writers...that we must go to find some of the best-known children's hymns, such as All Things Bright and Beautiful, There Is a Green Hill Far Away, and the Christmas carol Once in Royal David's City" (Pollard). C.F. Alexander contributes six compositions here, all from a "less theological High Church" perspective: "easy rhythm, simple vocabulary and vivid images, tender sentiments, plain teaching, all combine to ensure the success of these hymns." The contents are arranged alphabetically but the hymns follow a different sequence, beginning with Onward Christian Soldiers and concluding with Jesus, Tender Shepherd. Beautifully illustrated throughout by Barker with a frontispiece and 11 additional color plates (one reproduced on the jacket), double-page endpapers (colored in blue), and black-and-white vignettes in the text. Best known for her Fairy illustrations, Barker was said to be a devout Anglican, "contributing designs for postcards and greeting cards over the years to the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, the Girls’ Friendly Society, and the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel. In 1925, one of these paintings, ‘The Darling of the World is Come’ was purchased by Queen Mary. In addition, she also made paintings for churches, as well as donating paintings to help raise money." First published in 1933, (He Leadeth Me, Barker's collaboration with her sister Dorothy O. Barker, appeared in the same year), this post-war edition is undated but the rear panel of the dust jacket lists 11 Barker titles, with Groundsel and Necklaces (1946) the most recent. Pollard. English Hymns (Writers and Their Work, No. 123).