A Sentimental Journey Through France and Italy

The 14th book published by The Folio Society, and the second of the 1949 issues. It was designed by Charles Ede, set in 11/14 Baskerville type and printed by W.S. Cowell of Ipswich.

Cowell invented the “Plastocowell” lithographic process which the illustrator used in the book.

The Author

Laurence Sterne was born in 1713, and died of consumption in 1768 shortly after this book was published. He trained as a cleric, but became a full time writer with the publication of his most famous work, Tristram Shandy. This was published by the Folio Society in 1970

The Illustrator

This was the first Folio Society book illustrated by Nigel Lambourne. He illustrated several others, including Moll Flanders in 1954. His last involvement was in 1983.

The Story

The novel is a series of linked episodes of the travels of Yorick through France. He is an unashamed flirt and will try his luck with titled ladies and chambermaids. He travelled without a passport, which was a risk as England happens to be at war with France at the time (The Seven Years War). He manages to obtain a passport through the good offices of a French Shakespeare lover. Although, in terms of plot, the novel never really goes anywhere, we learn of Yorick’s love of life, love of meeting people and love for womankind in general. On the rare occasion he treats someone harshly, he very soon regrets it and makes amends.

Yorick never gets to Italy, Sterne’s sickness and death probably getting in the way of this extension.  Sterne’s close friend John Hall Stevenson, decided to continue this fictional travelogue in a book called Yoricks Sentimental Journey Continued. (Warning…large PDF file of the entire sequel)

The Illustrations

These were printed by the “Plastocowell” lithographic process. As far as I can understand it each colour layer is drawn on separate plastic sheets, and then transferred to a nickel plate for printing. I like the illustrations very much

List Of Illustrations

List Of Illustrations

Title Page

Title Page

All in all a very pretty book. The binding has a wonderful floral design . Each chapter in the book begins with a large pink capital. Although the dustjacket of my copy is a little grubby and worn, the interior is in great condition.