An association copy is a book with a unique history, most often connected to the author, printer, or other notable personality. The signatures and inscriptions found in an association copy can shed light on the ownership history of a book.
As an author and printer, William Morris inscribed many of the books he gave as gifts to friends and colleagues. Analyzing these annotations alongside other evidence, it is possible to construct a picture of Morris's social milieu, which included family and friends, colleagues and critics. The inscriptions pictured here are taken from association copies available in Special Collections at the University of Maryland.
Left Image: William Morris and Edward Burne-Jones. Burne-Jones was an artist, designer, and lifelong friend and collaborator of Morris.
Inscription by William Morris to Edward Burne-Jones (1833-1898)
Inscription by William Morris to his mother, Emma Morris (1805-1894).
Inscription by William Morris to Frederick James Furnivall (1825-1910)
Furnivall was a literary scholar and founder of the Chaucer Society.
Inscription by William Morris to Robert Steele (1860-1944)
Steele was a medievalist scholar heavily influenced by Morris.
Inscription by William Morris to his sister-in-law, Elizabeth Burden (1842-unknown)
"To Elizabeth Burden from her affectionate Brother, William Morris, Christmas, 1890." She worked as a skilled embroiderer for Morris & Co.
Inscription by William Morris to Georgiana Burne-Jones (1840-1920)
Georgiana was the wife of Edward Burne-Jones and close friend to Morris.
Inscription by May Morris (1862-1938)
"In memory of a pleasant afternoon, June 18th, 1919, May Morris, 8 Hammersmith Terrace, W." May was the youngest daughter of William Morris.
Inscription by Edward Burne-Jones to his son-in-law, John William Mackail (1859-1945)
Mackail was a scholar and William Morris biographer.
Inscription by William Morris to Louisa MacDonald Baldwin (1845-1925)
Louisa was the younger sister of Georgiana Burne-Jones and wife of politician Alfred Baldwin.