London and Oxford: A.R. Mowbray & Co. Ltd., 1908. First edition. Original gilt decorated red cloth (6 1/8 inches tall). Early owner signature, later donation bookplate, small shelf number in white ink to gently toned spine, cracking to text block but gilt bright and corners sharp. A near-fine copy. Item #1211
"THE SUBJECT OF ECCLESIASTICAL COSTUME"
First edition of Percy Dearmer's history of ecclesiastical costume—illustrated with a frontispiece ("Bishop in Choir Habit") and 75 photographs and sketches. With a title taken from the Book of Common Prayer, Dearmer "tried to arrange this book so that it may be of use to the student as well as the general reader." The book consists of five sections: Part I. Introductory, Part II. Ornaments of the Primitive Church, Part III. After the First Six Centuries, Part IV. Out-Door Costume, Part V. Significance of the Ornaments. Crediting the prior research of Joseph Wilpert and Francis Xavier Braun, Dearmer's brief Preface alludes to "ancient controversies" and hopes "the foolish vestarian warfare of three centuries and a half has been laid to rest" by a report from the recent Convocation of Canterbury. A List of Plates and a List of Figures in Text (by Clement O. Skilbeck) numbers a black-and-white frontispiece and 40 additional photographic plates and 34 vignettes sketches in-text. Printed in Oxford and published as the first number of The Arts of the Church series, with a brief prefatory Note highlighting "the various arts which have clustered around the public worship of God in the Church of Christ." With a brief Index and a list of other books by Dearmer.