Jack B Yeats (1871-1957) & Elizabeth Yeats (1868–1940) “A Broadside”

Jack B Yeats (1871-1957) & Elizabeth Yeats (1868–1940) “A Broadside”

Code: 11212


H: 28cm (11")W: 37.5cm (14.8")


“A Broadside” (No.3 Fifth Year, August 1912)
Jack Butler Yeats (1871-1957) & Elizabeth Corbet Yeats (1868–1940)
Letterpress with hand-coloured woodcuts
Printed on fine wove paper 
First edition, sole printing,
One of 300 copiesunbound as issued
Published by the Cuala Press
August 1912

Folio folded to 2 leaves
28 x 37.5 cm (open)

One full-page uncoloured woodcut illustration "The Fair of Carricknagat" (signed within the plate) and two hand-coloured illustrations "My Love Johnny" (signed within the plate) and "The Convict of Clonmell" (signed within monogram within the plate). Framed with glazing, double-sided.

"A Broadside" was published monthly between June 1908 and May 1915 as a collaboration by the Yeats family with Elizabeth Corbet "Lolly" Yeats (1868–1940) as typesetter, printer and publisher, William Butler Yeats (1865–1939) as editor, 'Lily' Yeats (1866–1949) as designer and Jack Butler Yeats (1871-1957) as illustrator. The printing was done by hand on an Albion Press built in 1853.

There were 84 issues in total, each printed in a limited run of 300 copies. Usually two Irish verses (classical or contemporary) were accompanied by relevant illustrations. They were printed in such a way that the main illustration could be separated, if desired, to become a framed print - leaving a "ballad sheet" with the verses. The present copy remains intact and is that for August 1912 (No.3 of the Fifth Year of publication). This issue includes the words to "My Love Johnny", a traditional Irish song, and a translation of the tragic poem "The Convict of Clonmell" (also known as the "Goal Of Cluain Meala") written by James Joseph Callanan (1795–1829).

The main illustration here is "The Fair of Carricknagat", an event which was held on the first day of February each year and was one of the most important horsefairs in Country Sligo, in the West of Ireland. An Irish harp flag can be seen fluttering over two of the horsedrawn wagons. This was a symbol associated with moderate nationalism at a time and, on close inspection, beneath this can be seen a republican pamphleteer being confronted by two policemen.

The gifted Yeats family were much involved with the 'Celtic Revival' and the reemergence of Irish arts and crafts and literature at the beginning of the 20th Century. The Irish painter John Butler Yeats (1839-1922) had four gifted children: the poet William Butler Yeats (1865–1939); the embroiderer and textile designer Susan Mary 'Lily' Yeats (1866–1949); the printer and publisher Elizabeth Corbet 'Lolly' Yeats (1868-1940); and the artist Jack Butler Yeats (1871–1957). All of these were involved with Cuala Industies and the Cuala Press (named after the Gaelic territory which formed part of County Dublin before the Norman conquest of Ireland).

An excellent example of this scarce publication with hand-coloured woodcuts by one of Ireland's foremost artists.