12 OCTOBER 1929, Page 29

Greek Love Poems

Sappho Revocata : Being an Emended Text with an English Translation, a Life and a Glossary of Aeolic Words. By J. M. Edmonds. (Peter Davies. 63s.) Some Greek Love-Poems. Gathered and Translated, with a brief account of Greek Love-Poetry, by J. M. Edmonds. (Peter Davies. 50s.) TnE two beautiful volumes of Greek Lyrics which Peter Davies has produced in limited editions both contain interesting selections translated in a creditable and scholarly manner by Mr. Edmonds. It is, however, chiefly the format of these editions .which calls for comment. The hand-made paper, Batchelor's, is excellent, and the printing, by Joh. Enschede en Zonen, of Haarlem, unexceptionable. The binding is not luxurious for books of this character, and a more rounded bevel would have been less liable to damage, but it is certainly tasteful. The pre-eminent feature is the typography, designed both as to the English and the Greek by J. van Krimpen. The Lutetia type, which is used for the English, is completely satisfactory, but the Antigone, in which the Greek is set, is open to some criticism. In the first volume the lines are alto- gether too fine, in any case, for so large a page as a medium 4to ; and the spider's web effect is not pleasing. The new fount used for the second volume has eliminated this defect. There is, however, a certain unevenness of strength in the capitals, possibly unavoidable and possibly traditional. The capitals Rho, Beta, and Phi, for example, seem almost of another fount frcim those of Theta, Mu, or Omega. In some of the capitals and lower-case letters, again, there are certain minor (shall we say?) affectations. The Upsilon, for example, turns back on itself instead of carrying forward, while the Theta seems to miss its character by the loiver half not beingjoined up at all. Greek type is, however, notoriously difficult and it would be ungracious to be hypercritical of such really good work as we have here. The success of Vera Willoughby's decorations, if perhaps we demur to the figure drawing, is beyond dispute.