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The Marriage of Heaven and Hell (Oxford Paperbacks) 1st Edition

3.5 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0192811677
ISBN-10: 0192811673
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Editorial Reviews

Review

“A leading American Blake scholar once described the prospect of editing The Marriage of Heaven and Hell as ‘a swamp filled with gators;’ Michael Phillips has navigated his way with great skill through the problems of chronology, textual unity, technique, contemporary context and significance of Blake's strikingly witty, sardonic, quirky, cryptic product of his unique combination of text and illustration in his illuminated books. As well as the facsimile of Copy B, one of the earliest of the nine known copies of the book, there are twenty-one valuable supplementary color plates of comparable pages from other copies, including a full run of Plate 14 as it occurs in the nine copies produced between 1793 to the year of his death, 1827. The detailed commentary discusses both text and illustrations, and in the case of the illustrations is most helpfully accompanied by appropriate details from Blake's designs.” — Martin Butlin, formerly Keeper of the British Collection, Tate Gallery, London, editor of the catalogue raisonne of the Complete Paintings and Drawings of William Blake

(Martin Butlin)

“This edition of one of Blake’s most potent and provocative books will give great pleasure both to Blake enthusiasts and to those new to his work.”

(Tracy Chevalier)

“This is an excellent scholarly edition of one of Blake’s most fascinating works, likely to become the defining text for generations to come. No one knows as much about Blake’s work in this period as Michael Phillips and he uses his knowledge of the text, its context, and Blake’s printing techniques to open up the question of what Blake thought he was doing with The Marriage of Heaven and Hell.” —John Mee

(John Mee) --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

William Blake (1757-1827) was an English poet, painter, and printmaker.
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Product Details

  • Series: Oxford Paperbacks
  • Paperback: 82 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; 1 edition (October 30, 1975)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0192811673
  • ISBN-13: 978-0192811677
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 0.2 x 5.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #570,567 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Please disregard some of the other reviews of this product as they have been transferred by Amazon.com to this product when they were written for another product -- no fault of the reviewers. Amazon.com does not currently recognize the need for different reviews of different editions of the same work. This review is of the edition of William Blake's Marriage of Heaven and Hell published by U Chicago Press (2011) for the Bodelian library and edited by Michael Phillips. Some of these other reviews really need to be deleted as they are completely irrelevant to this specific product. I will be writing here about the hardcover edition. I have not yet seen a copy of the paperback edition.

This beautiful and professionally-bound U Chicago edition of MHH appears to be a cover to cover facsimile of the Bodelian's copy of Marriage of Heaven and Hell. I mean "cover to cover" quite literally: the image posted here as the cover is a full-color photographic reproduction of a nineteenth-century binding, wear marks and all. Upon opening the book you will find a full-color reproduction of the inside cover, handwriting, bookstamp, and all. The next page -- which is a blank page in the original -- is again reproduced exactly, water stains and all. What you will be purchasing with this edition, then, is an exact reproduction of Copy B of the Marriage of Heaven and Hell from cover to cover, with the addition of Phillips's extensive introduction, textual transcription, notes, commentary, a checklist of copies, and bibliography. There's simply nothing like it; not even the edition published by the William Blake Trust for the Illuminated Books series. Owning this book is as close to owning an original copy of the Marriage of Heaven and Hell as you can get.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Since this is a fairly serious work, the Amazon mandated choices regarding plot, mood, pace and characters really don't apply. Since Amazon groups together all reviews of books with the same title, the one to get is edited by Michael Phillips. Mr Phillips has spent almost a lifetime studying William Blake and carefully presents his insight as well as differences in various editions of the book.
To appreciate this book, one has to take into account the political and religious turmoil when it was written. Mr Phillips gives a lot of background to help understand the era.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I do not understand why, but this is not the entire book. It is only three pages and only contains the Proverbs of Hell. I wish I noticed that before I bought it. The whole book is available online for free, so don't bother with this incomplete version.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Good grief -- the other reviewers of this book clearly did not buy it, but are arguing about Blake's theology and using this Website to do it.

I have no comment on the poem. It needs no defense and has fully established itself in Western culture.

But as for the *book*, the object you hold in your hands and look at, I do have a few words. This is a very poorly produced, poorly bound, amateurishly laid out book containing appalling reproductions of the art. It was pretty obviously created in Microsoft Word and bound at the equivalent of a Kinko's. For twenty bucks you can do a lot better. I'm returning my edition.
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This was considered the work of a mad man when it was first published, I would compare it to dante's inferno in places, the art work was breakthruough for its time. I think it is the work of a man way ahead of his time. Written when revolution was in the air, it is still revelant today.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Copy is difficult to read electronically. A piece of one page appears on screen with a cut off piece of the next page. I used IPad to read it and just didn't work.
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The poem is wonderful but I was disappointed with the reproduction of the book. The illuminations are very small and very difficult to really examine closely.
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I purchased the Kindle edition and it did not convert well. The illustrations are very dramatic, but it is very difficult to read, hence, I never finished it.
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