Incline Press • 36 Bow Street Oldham OL1 1SJ England
Telephone 0161 627 1966 (from abroad dial 011 44 161 627 1966)

Hand-made books for the collector who reads and the reader who collects

Forthcoming books


A Bread & Cheese Bookseller:
the autobiography of James Weatherley, a 19th-century Manchester bookseller

edited and annotated by Michael Powell and Terry Wycke

James Weatherley's autobiography comes from the vaults of the archive of Chetham's Library. Written in the 1860s and previously unpublished, Weatherley's hand-written text is here transcribed, introduced and annotated by Chetham's Librarian Dr. Michael Powell and the noted Manchester historian Terry Wyke. Richly illustrated from the Library's collection of early 19th-century Manchester ephemera, Weatherley's story vividly depicts the few joys and many vicissitudes of a life as a "bread and cheese bookseller", one of those working at the lower end of the book trade. Whether selling from a shelf hung round his neck or from a street stall or shop, he always struggled against his drinking habits. During the Peterloo Massacre he sat in a pub round the corner, and at one time had to walk to the debtors' prison in Lancaster. Several times he chased after an elusive Caxton that would change his fortune, never getting close enough. James Weatherley's story paints a striking portrait in Manchester during the difficult times of change in the early 19th century.


[Pickering pressmark]

Constructed on Lines of Truth & Beauty:
the Books of William Pickering, by Bernard Warrington

We are in the process of publishing what we think can justly be called the first major book about the publisher and antiquarian bookseller, William Pickering. The text is based on a series of scholarly articles first published in journals during the 1980s, which the author continued to revise as his collection and research grew. The illustrations will all be from Pickering's books, and will include original leaves and prints from surviving original wood blocks.

Pickering published books from 1820 to 1852. His books were the first to make use of allusive typography when reprinting ancient texts; and he is also credited with spearheading the revival of Caslon Old Style types at the end of the 1830s. Though he developed an eye as a book designer rather than as a printer, he is justly regarded as the successor of such printers as Baskerville and Bensley, and is the link between them, William Morris, and the revival of fine printing that followed in the 20th century. He was the also the first commercial publisher to use cloth binding.

We admire him for his commitment to high production values and his belief that book publishing is as much about producing worthwhile texts to such values as it is about making money. Although his career ended in bankruptcy, that must be balanced against his commitment to fine books and fine printing.

Further details will be given as publication nears.

William Pickering signalled his homage to the great sixteenth-century printer Aldus Manutius with his pressmark: the Aldine Dolphin and Anchor entwined with the words Aldi Discip.

Book on playing cards delayed

A delay in the stencilling process has meant that our playing card book Woodcut Courts and Pochoir Pips has been put on hold. Although the type is set, the paper purchased, and many of the tip-ins printed, this delay has stymied production. As soon as work recommences on the hand colouring, we will be issuing a prospectus for this long-overdue project. Watch this web site for details.

Incline Press is a subscriber to the Fine Press Books Association and a member of the Oxford Guild of Printers.
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Last updated 1 October 2011 by K. Whalen.