A Compleat Collection of English Proverbs (page 1/3)

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Some woodcuts from “A Compleat Collection of English Proverbs Be Your Gods” by John Ray, 1737. John Ray was a clergyman and a biologist and naturalist; he was born on the 29th day of June, 1628, and named John Wray; he changed his name to Ray when he was 42. He died in 1705.

John Ray Initiative

Title: A Compleat Collection of English Proverbs

Author: Ray, John

Published by: J. Hughs

City: London

Date: 1737

Total items: 14

Out of copyright (called public domain in the USA), hence royalty-free for all purposes usage credit requested, or as marked.

Some sample images

[picture: Initial Letter T Woodcut]

Initial Letter T Woodcut

A decorative initial letter “T” used as a drop cap (drop capital). It features palm trees and buildings in the background, perhaps intended to be evocative of the Holy Land. [more...] [$]

[picture: Chapter end decoration: eagles]

Chapter end decoration: eagles

A decoration centered after the text of a chapter. I’ve made lots of sizes so you can use it on Web page. The woodcut was clearly fairly old and damaged, and it is not [...] [more...] [$]

[picture: Chapter head with musical instruments]

Chapter head with musical instruments

Chapter headpieces like this were very popular in the eighteenth century; they remained in widespread use into the early 20th century as a low-cost way to make a book appear more expensive than it really was. There was quite a market in the engraved printing-blocks such as the [...] [more...] [$]

[picture: Chapter end decoration: cherubs]

Chapter end decoration: cherubs

Two cherubs (naked, winged children) sit amongst ornate rococo foliage, apparently discoursing. This decoration was used to fill space at the end of a chapter, and to show that the text had ended. [more...] [$]

[picture: Initial Letter T With Angels and Devil]

Initial Letter T With Angels and Devil

The two winged creatures in this decorative initial letter T are very definitely female and probably intended to be naked. They seem to have fish’s tails rather than legs and feet, so maybe they are Angels of Mermaids? Or just winged mermaids? Or they might be intended to be emenating from the ears of the face below, and be regular angels. The horned [...] [more...] [$]


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angels bare feet battles cartici chapterheads cherubs clipart decorations devils eagles fishing floriated borders flowers frames greyscale hearts horses initials letterb lettert mermaids musical instruments mythical creatures nudity ornaments page images passé partout initials people romance scrollwork tailpieces title pages transport vignetted initials vinework water weapons

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Some woodcuts from “A Compleat Collection of English Proverbs Be Your Gods” by John Ray, 1737. John Ray was a clergyman and a biologist and naturalist; he was born on the 29th day of June, 1628, and named John Wray; he changed his name to Ray when he was 42. He died in 1705.

John Ray Initiative


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