London: Marcus Ward, c1870s-1880s. First Printings. Various sizes (2 x 2½ inches to to 5 x 7 inches). Eighty individual chromolithographed cards, some forming complete or partial sets. Printed in full colour, in a variety of shapes and formats, including: straight and scalloped edges, fan-shaped cards, fold-out "double" cards, and composite cards (with elaborate scallop-edges cards mounted onto larger cards with decorative borders), some printed on bevel-edged heavy card stock. The charming and playful illustrations depict a variety of scenes, with good-natured children at play, some in the company of flowers, animals or giant insects, dressed in their play clothes or in their finest apparel. Some of the images are identified as Greenaway's by her printed initials "KG" or by her name in full printed script. The greetings expressed on the cards are mostly related to Christmas and New Year, but also include some Valentine greetings and others of a general nature. Some have been custom-overprinted with trade advertisements (for vinegar, cigars, books, sewing machines, etc). By their very nature, these cards are fragile and ephemeral, and for the most part, very difficult to obtain. Four cards each have one slightly chipped corner, the remaining cards are in very good to fine condition. Housed in a modern binder with typed identification tags. The entire group has been catalogued according to the research done by Thomas E. Schuster and Rodney Engen as published in their book "PRINTED KATE GREENAWAY: A Catalogue Raisonne" (London, 1986), a copy of which is included. A complete detailed catalogue of the collection is available on request. Item #312670
¶ Apart from the many books and magazine stories she illustrated, Kate Greenaway worked as a greeting card designer for the respected card printer-publisher Marcus Ward, for whom she produced at least 32 separate sets of greeting cards with approximately 150 to 200 separate designs.