Leaf from Gerard's Historie of Plants, London, 1597.
Original leaves from famous books, nine centuries, 1122–1923 A.D. Annotated by Otto F. Ege
New York : Philip C. Duschnes, 1949
Collection of Michael Thompson
This elaborate portfolio was one of Otto Ege's later productions. The deluxe edition was limited to fifty sets, each of which included forty leaves from manuscripts and printed books. The “regular” edition, limited to 110 sets, included just twenty-five leaves, only three of which had been removed from manuscripts. As was the case with several other Ege portfolios, Original Leaves from Famous Books was published by Philip C. Duschnes, New York .
Unlike some of Ege's other portfolios (see for example cat. 14), this group of leaves has no unifying theme other than the importance or fame of the printed books from which the leaves came. Leaf-book collectors will indeed find leaves from some familiar books here, including the Nurenberg Chronicle (1493), the King James Bible (1611), Samuel Johnson's Dictionary (1755), but there are also leaves from other famous, but less-often dismembered volumes, including the 1555 edition of Vesalius's De humani corporis fabrica .