November 1849: Bookbinding in the Antique Style

An article on page two of The Glasgow Herald, on Friday the 9th of November, 1849 , reads:


Bookbinding in the Antique Style. – We had, the other day, an opportunity of seeing a specimen

of bookbinding which is altogether new in our time. This was a copy of a Psalter, for the altar of

the new Episcopal Chapel of Dunoon. The boards of the book are of carved oak, and are fixed to an

elegantly-finished morocco back. On the centre of each board a cross, thrown slightly into perspective,

and in low relief, is carved in the wood; round the edges of the boards there is a line of scroll ornament,

carved in intaglio, which is designed after the antique style. The insides of the boards are finished with

gilt-tooled morocco, and rich marbled paper. The edges of the Psalter are gold, tooled with an ornament

in accordance with the general character of the binding. The clasps and corner pieces are of massive

polished silver. This unique specimen of bookbinding has been produced at the establishment of Mr.

Frame, of this city, whose attention has been recently directed to this most substantial and gorgeous

branch of his business. We imagine that Mr. Frame will speedily create a demand for bindings in the

style of the above Psalter, which is so well adapted for the preservation of valuable illustrated works, and

so suitable for private libraries. Books bound like the one we have attempted to describe are very portable,

and exceedingly durable.”



Colin Frame, bookbinder, 85 Queen Street, and 17 Royal Exchange Square, is listed on page 125, in The

Post-Office Annual Glasgow Directory for 1849-1850.


For further information about Holy Trinity Church, Dunoon, which opened for worship in September, 1850,

please see the website:


I am indebted to the Rector, Revd David Railton, with whom I corresponded in 2020, for his interest and

assistance in trying to locate the Psalter. Unfortunately, its present whereabouts are unknown.



George Fairfull-Smith, January 2023.