Tall Commonplace book 150 x 300 - Cockerell marbling
This book is based on a historical commonplace book from the Bodleian Library. It is much taller than a conventional book of this width (15cm wide by 30 cm tall), but this works very well for accumulating shorter entries.
The covers are hand marbled papers from the legendary Douglas Cockerell and Son. There is a lovely video held by the East Anglian Film Archive which you can watch here - it lasts about 15 minutes, and shows exactly how these papers were made. Although frames were used to give a regularity to the patterns, the enormous skill in creating these high precision patterns should not be underestimated, and in my view they are a complete marvel to behold. These papers have not been made for perhaps 30 years, and they are now few and far between.
This book has 128 pages of 130 gsm cartridge, so it is very suitable for drawing as well as writing.
Commonplace Books are a very purposeful way of using a journal, or giving one as a gift. They have been used since the Fifteenth Century, the idea being to record passages of text, poems, quotations, recipes, reading lists, drawings, sayings, family turns of phrase, calligraphy, aspirations - any words of perceived wisdom or personal significance - all making up a memoir of the author’s interests over a number of years. All sorts of famous people have kept Commonplace Books including John Milton, Napoleon Bonaparte, Lewis Carroll and Virginia Woolf. A brief note about the history and use of Commonplace Books is enclosed with the book.