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CFA Voysey Bookplate


Rare CFA Voysey designed

antique bookplate for

Beatrice Emily & James Morton 1901.

In "Symbolism in Design" Voysey identified this design as the joint bookplate of Beatrice Emily & James Morton.

The lady is of Irish descent, while her husband hails from Scotland,

hence the thistle and the shamrock are growing together, whilst the birds stand sentry over the united hearts.

Beatrice & James Morton were an artistic couple whe shared ideas about fine craftsmanship, politics & patronage

of the arts. They surrounded themselves with the latest art & furnishings of the day, much of which was

designed or made by artists & craftsmen who became their close friends.

This bookplate commemorates their wedding, on 21st March 1901.

The pair of interlocking hearts, which represents the Mortons union, is a symbolic device often found in

Voyseys pattern designs.

James was the son of Alexander Morton who founded the textile manufacturing company in Ayrshire in 1870.

In 1895 James became a partner in the firm, transforming production by using avant-garde designers such as Voysey.

These fabrics were sold through retailers such as Liberty & Morris & Co in London, and Wylie & Lochhead in Glasgow.

The bookplate contained within the book

'Hopes And Fears For Art'

One of five Lectures by William Morris from 1878-1881.

Contents include;

The Art of the People, The Beauty of Life, & Making The Best of It.

This copy was in James Morton's own Library,

Inscribed inside James Morton, Darvel, July 1893.