Victorian Book of the Month: Summer flowers edition
This month’s featured book from the Victorian Collection is Queen Summer: or the Tourney of the Lily and the Rose, a poem written and illustrated by Walter Crane (1845-1915). Crane was one of the premier book illustrators and artists of the late Victorian period, but he also dabbled at writing.
Queen Summer is one of three poetry books Crane published in his lifetime (he also wrote an autobiography and a handful of treatises on art). The poem personifies summer as a queen and flowers as her handmaidens in a tale of chivalric romance. Crane’s illustrations reflect the medieval theme and are reminiscent of the works of the Pre-Raphaelites and William Morris.
Special Collections owns a wide range of works by Crane, including his famous children’s toy books and even some original artwork for book illustrations.