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The book cover designs of John Leighton, F.S.A.

Edmund M. B. King


THE chief aim of this article is to identify and describe the signed cover designs by John Leighton on books in the British Library. What follows is a summary of work in progress. This reveals the enormous creativity and versatility of Leighton's cover designs, of which over four hundred have been traced to date. Leighton worked with many publishers, all of whom had London offices, or were based exclusively in the capital. Between 1845 and 1902, he was employed by nearly seventy. Of this number, he provided three designs or less for forty publishers, and it is likely that his skill as a designer made many different publishers or printers keen to commission his services.

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