Printed Books & Bindings

Diversity and quality have been hallmarks of this collection, with works spanning Western book production from the earliest printed ephemera to important first editions from the twentieth century. The Morgan Library & Museum's holdings encompass a large number of high points in the history of printing, often exemplified by a lone surviving copy or a copy that is perfect in every way. Areas of exceptional strength include incunables, early children's books, fine bindings, and illustrated books.

The collection's strong base derives from the major acquisitions of Pierpont Morgan, who sought to establish in the United States a library worthy of the great European collections. It is rich in special and unique copies, first editions of classical authors, and works of notable printers, such as Jenson and Caxton. Among the highlights are three Gutenberg Bibles, a strong collection of works by Lord Byron, Charles Dickens, Edgar Allan Poe, John Ruskin, Mark Twain, Herman Melville, and William Morris, and classic early children's books. The Carter Burden Collection of American Literature, a major 1998 gift, strengthens the Morgan's twentieth-century holdings with authors such as Ted Hughes, Sylvia Plath, Vladimir Nabokov, Gertrude Stein, and Tennessee Williams.

There are many beautiful and important bindings in the Morgan, but the bindings collection comprises about a thousand volumes acquired primarily to document the development of bookbinding. It is among the finest collections of bindings in this hemisphere, equally strong in quantity and quality. Areas of particular distinction are English, French, and Italian bindings of the sixteenth through the early nineteenth centuries.

See a selection of incunable bookbindings »

Plans, elevations, sections, and perspective views of the gardens and buildings at Kew, in Surry ... / by William Chambers ...
Stowe: a description of the magnificent house and gardens of the Right Honourable Richard Grenville Temple, Viscount and Baron Cobham : one of His Majesty's most honourable privy council ... : embellished with a general plan of the gardens, and also a separate plan of each building, with perspective views of the same. ... With the description of the inside of the house.
Poems on various subjects, religious and moral / by Phillis Wheatley, negro servant to Mr. John Wheatley, of Boston, in New England.
Suite of plates for Collection complète des oeuvres de J.J. Rousseau [print]
In Congress, July 4, 1776. A declaration by the representatives of the United States of America : in general Congress assembled.
El Ingenioso hidalgo Don Quixote de la Mancha ; / compuesto por Miguel de Cervántes Saavedra
A Little pretty pocket-book, : intended for the instruction and amusement of little Master Tommy, and pretty Miss Polly. : With two letters from Jack the Giant-Killer; as also a ball and pincushion; the use of which will infallibly make Tommy a good boy, and Polly a good girl. : To which is added, a little song-book, being a new attempt to teach children the use of the English alphabet, by way of diversion.
Songs of innocence.
America : a prophecy.
Oriental scenery : twenty-four views in Hindoostan ...
Les jardins : poëme / par Jacques Delille.
A grammar of the first principles of agriculture : intended chiefly for the use of young persons as a branch of liberal education / by R.W. Dickson.
The swan of elegance : a new game designed for the instruction and amusement of youth.
Les roses / par P.J. Redouté, peintre de fleurs ... avec le texte par Cl. Ant. Thory ...
Frankenstein, or, The modern Prometheus.
[Views of Sezincote House and grounds, the Seat of Sir Charles Cockerell].
British and foreign animals [game] : a new game, moral, instructive and amusing : designed to allure the minds of youth to an acquaintance with the wonders of nature.
A practical illustration of Gilpin's day : representing the various effects on landscape scenery from morning till night, in thirty designs from nature / by the Rev. Wm. Gilpin ; with instructions in, and explanation of, the improved method of colouring,
Les métamorphoses du jour / par I. Adolphe Grandville.
Lustige Geschichten und drollige Bilder : mit 15 schön kolorirten Tafeln : für Kinder von 3-6 Jahren.