Max Beerbohm, the foremost caricaturist of his day, was hailed by The Times in 1913 as "the greatest of English comic artists", by Bernard Berenson as "the English Goya", and by Edmund Wilson as "the greatest ... portrayer of personalities -- in the history, of art". This delightful book is an anthology, of Beerbohm''s best images, accompanied by historical and analytical commentary by John Hall that is enriched by liberal quotation from Beerbohm''s own witty essays, criticism, letters, and fiction.
The 213 caricatures reproduced here are arranged in chapters by category: writers, including Wilde, Kipling, James, Conrad, Yeats, Twain, Wells, Hardy, Strachey, Forster, and Pound; theater people, including Ibsen, Shaw, and Barrie; artists, including Whistler, Sargent, and Fry; politicians, including Disraeli, Theodore Roosevelt, Wilson, and Churchill; royalty, especially King Edward VII (Beerbohm''s favorite subject), but also Queen Victoria, George V, and Edward VIII; and miscellaneous contemporaries, including Caruso, Sousa, and financier Albert De Rothschild. Also reproduced are generous selections from Beerbohm''s two books of caricatures dealing with the past: Dante, Burns, Wordsworth, Coleridge, Tennyson, and Browning from The Poet''s Corner, and Rossetti, Elizabeth Siddal, Fanny Cornforth, Swinburne, Ruskin, Morris, and others from Rossetti and His Circle. The final chapter is devoted to self-portraits. The book -- with its expertly reproduced plates and engaging commentary -- will be treasured by all those who admire "the Incomparable Max".