The Comedy of Dante Alighieri: Binding Design (1865)

Dante Gabriel Rossetti


Physical Description

Medium: Smooth, plain, black cloth boards. Design blocked in gold on upper and lower covers and spine. Deep green end-papers.
Dimensions: 7 x 4 3/5 in.
Note: See also the back cover and the spine of this book.

Production Description

Production Date: 1865

Scholarly Commentary


Fredeman describes this as “the first of DGR's emblematic bindings”: “a semi-full-cased design, with three rondels of stars & flames, emblematic of the tripartite cosmological structure of the Divine Comedy. . .arranged with a central box-frame, and in each corner interlocking Alphas & Omegas with rondels, the whole stamped in gold, with the Inferno rondel replicated in the centre of the back cover” (Fredeman,“Woodman, Spare that Block”, 30). DGR's picture frames as well as several of his binding designs show a partiality toward the use of rondels, but the elaborate symbolistic treatment here probably reflects WMR's influence on his brother's design for his book.


  • Fredeman,“Woodman, Spare that Block”, 7-41.
  • Grieve,“Applied Art 2”, 79-83.
  • DGR: Painter and Poet, Birmingham, 1973, 57 (no. 228).
The Comedy of Dante Alighieri: Binding Design (1865)
Copyright: ©University of Delaware Library, Newark, Delaware
Electronic Archive Edition: 1
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