[COSTUME BOOK] E. MAASKAMP (author). Afbeeldingen van de Kleeding, Zeden en Gewoonten in Holland, met den aanvang der negentiende eeu: Tableaux Des Habillements, des Moeurs et des Costumes en Hollande au Commencement du Dix-Neuvième Siècle. Amsterdam; E. Maaskamp, Auprès du Palais. .
4to. Finely and handsomely bound in half tan Regency calf over marbled boards, the spine with 5 raised bands exquisitely and extravagantly decorated in gilt in compartments with a repeating scroll-tool design, lettered direct in gilt, marbled endpapers and edges, housed within a custom-made beige cloth-covered fall-down-back box with green cloth label lettered in gilt; pp. ; with fine stipple-engraved, and hand-coloured, allegorical frontispiece of the Muse of Drawing by Louis Portman after Jacques Kuyper, together with 20 other fine, and exquisite, engraved plates with detailed and expert hand-colouring throughout; a wonderfully pleasing copy; externally fine; recently expertly, and invisibly, rejointed at upper board by the peerless Charles Gledhill, internally also preserved in exceptionally crisp state with occasional very light, and inoffensive, browning and spotting (almost exclusively confined to text pages) and some of the unavoidable offsetting from plates to blank guards, with a neat contemporary inscription, dated 1817, to front blank.
Early, revised, edition, complete with an additional 4 plates, with extensive explanatory text in both Dutch and French. This work originally appeared in 5 instalments from 1803 to 1807, with a total of 16 plates. All images carry the imprint of Evert Maaskamp and Colnaghi & Co., apart from plate 1, which only mentions the Dutch printer. It is a historically, ethnologically, and culturally, important volume of prints of costumes of the various Batavian provinces, designed to underline their antique origin, and their "absolute Dutchness". The venture was also, in part, a propaganda exercise, designed to reinforce Dutch national identity following a period of political unrest. Similar works had appeared in France, England, Germany and Switzerland in response to the growing intellectual interest in the study of popular culture. This also stimulated artistic, and commercial, competition between nations. The beautiful and animated backgrounds which were drawn from nature, the beautifully observed and documented details of costume (which were drawn from life), and the extensive anecdotal text, provide a social, cultural, and historical context for the dress (Eveline Koolhaas-Grosfeld. "Une nouvelle image des Pays-Bas: l'identité nationale par l'estampe").