Dariel: A Romance of Surrey

Designer: Alice Cordelia Morse (American, Ohio 1863–1961)

Author: Richard Doddridge Blackmore (British, Longworth, Berkshire 1825–1900 Teddington)

Publisher: Dodd, Mead & Co.

Date: 1897

Medium: Deep red cloth over boards with green and gold decoration

Dimensions: 7 3/4 x 11 7/8 in. (19.7 x 30.1 cm)
Other: 7 3/4 × 5 1/8 in. (19.7 × 13 cm)
Other: 7 3/4 x 6 3/4 in. (19.7 x 17.1 cm)

Classification: Bindings

Credit Line: Gift of Alice C. Morse, 1923, Transferred from the Library, 1956

Accession Number: 56.522.94


A leading New York book-cover designer in the late nineteenth century, Morse studied at the Woman’s Art School of the Cooper Union, then under John La Farge before working for Louis C. Tiffany as a painter and designer of stained glass. In 1887 she began to concentrate on book-covers, fufilling eighty-three commissions for New York commercial publishers by 1905. Complementing the text, she chose imagery ranging from classical, to Renaissance, Celtic, Arabic, Gothic, Rococo, Arts and Crafts and Art Nouveau. This cover, bound in deep red plain-weave cloth, is stamped in dark green and gold and embossed in gold with a Celtic-style vignette including interlacing and grotesques. The fact that decoration appears only on the front cover, with the spine and back left plain, indicates this is a publisher's proof.