Right now, this Houghton, Mifflin and Company edition is the oldest dated Rubaiyat on the website at 1888! Crazy! It actually feels like a window into the original conception of the Rubaiyat. Or…perhaps, what made it so popular. It doesn’t have fancy drawings or crazy designs for the poetry pages, but it has this mystical air to it that, I think, drew originally me into the Rubaiyat way back when.
It is something about how it presents the information…all of the detail about Omar Khayyam. Maybe it was the sketch of the tomb. That was so shocking in a good way to me. I was expecting neither it nor the letter about it. It was refreshing and it felt new. All of it just made me enchanted again. Yes, there are so many Rubaiyat editions I have that are truly beautiful, works of art, but it’s this type of copy that gives me tingles because it feels like…it feels like there’s this whole other lost world out there…still waiting to be unearthed again.
And I have a piece of it. Actually, I have many pieces of it now. But still, still, there are copies like this that surprise me.
This edition was donated by Bill Cloutier. Thank you so much!
The image of the Tomb of Omar Khayyam is striking and the accessory sections are striking and intriguing. Well constructed. Plain cover, but it does not matter.
It is basic and exactly what it needs to be.