18 APRIL 1931, Page 18

We recently wrote at length on the proud work undertaken

1•y the combined enterprise of the Shakespeare Head Press and Mr. Basil Blackwell of Oxford, in the issue of a new and complete edition of the works of Edmund Spenser in eight volumes at thirty guineas the set. There will be three hundred and fifty owners to be envied by the rest .of the world. This work points once more to the fact that in spite of the pessimism of those people who lament the Age of Machinery and Mass Production, and of those who cry out that the greatness of England is over, something still remains supreme. That is the art of book production. Never has that art reached so high a point as it stands at to-day. We may truly say that such presses as we now have in different parts of the country, putting out, under the supervision of the best artists who are giving their lives to the craft, books such as this edition of Spenser, can claim to rival the very rarest achievements of the eighteenth century. Vol. III. has now appeared, and consists of the first book of the Faerie Queene. The page has three Spenserian stanzas, well set, and graced with dignified capitals and occasional woodcuts.