(Charles Scribner's Sons, 1905)
First American Edition
Artist: Cyrus Cuneo (1878 - 1916)
Apart from Arthur I. Keller who I wrote about briefly several months ago I think I have more books illustrated by Cyrus Cuneo than any other artist of his period. His work can be found in all sorts of adventure, crime and lost race novels: Queen's Sheba's Ring and Nada the Lily both by H. Rider Haggard, The Weird Picture (reviewed on this blog here) and The Viking's Skull both by John Carling, The Mystery of the Yellow Room by Gaston Leroux, Dr. Silex by Harris Burland, The Red Room by William LeQueux, and nearly all the work of Charles Gilson, author of The Lost Island, The Lost Empire, The Race Round the World and other adventure and lost race novels.
American born Cuneo spent most of his life in San Francisco, moved to Canada where he did some paintings for Canadian Pacific Railway, and then moved onto England in the early 1900s where he remained painting, doing much of his work for magazines, newspapers and books. He died very young, only 37, from blood poisoning incurred after he was accidentally stabbed by a hat pin at a dance. For a brief overview of Cuneo's life and work go here. The essay is written by his son Terrence Cuneo, a British artist well known for railway studies and strange paintings of mice.
Below are seven of the ten illustration plates found in this excellent collection of short stories about literature's most famous gentleman thief, A.J. Raffles. Click to enlarge for better appreciation.