London: John Lane / New York: Macmillan & Co., 1896. 16 pp ads dated 1896. Original light brown cloth decorated in dark brown, with dark brown cloth spine decorated in gilt.
First Edition of Buchan's second book, a collection of essays, preceded only by his SIR QUIXOTE OF THE MOORS of 1895. This book is beautifully illustrated with etchings by D.Y. Cameron (who introduced Buchan to John Lane the publisher), and the cover design is by Patten Wilson.
SCHOLAR GIPSIES was published in John Lane's Arcady Library, and on the cover a goat-footed Pan piped to three nymphs. The essays, too, sounded many Arcadian notes -- references to Theocritus, to 'people of this Arcady' (i.e. the Upper Tweed), to 'the Piper'... There are some clear echoes of [Kenneth] Grahame: "Afternoon" in SCHOLAR GIPSIES -- a boy playing Jacobites who steals into the garden of a big house and meets a girl whom he is sure is a princess -- is very much in the vein of the story in [Grahame's 1895] THE GOLDEN AGE where children playing Argonauts explore a big garden and meet a girl who they are sure is Medea [Smith].
This is an unusually fine copy of a beautifully-produced book (the tan covers clean and the spine gilt bright). Rather scarce in this condition. Blanchard A4. Item #14896