c. 1768 Harvard College Bookplate Engraved By Nathaniel Hurd of Boston Hand Dated by Its Owner on April 3, 1769
(NATHANIEL HURD)(1729-1777). Colonial Boston Silversmith and Engraver, Noted for His Bookplates and His Design of the Harvard Emblem (1729-1777).
This is a fine example of the original printed Bookplate Nathaniel Hurd created on an engraved copper-plate, for Harvard College, measuring 3.75" x 5.5" and bearing his engraving of the Harvard College emblem, c. 1768, Fine. Signed in Print: "N. Hurd Sc. Boston" at the bottom. These bookplates were used in many of the volumes accessioned by the Harvard library between 1764 (after the fire) into the first half of the 19th century. This plate is marked "Dupl." at the top right and crossed out.
The plate notes that the book was donated by Edward Foster of Boston on April 3, 1769. Exhibiting light foxing, but is otherwise fine. The plate is housed in a custom foam-core slipcase along with the volume to which this bookplate was once affixed, being Robert Sanderman's “LETTERS ON THERON AND ASPASIO. Addressed to the AUTHOR...” (London: Printed for T. Vernor, and J. Charter, 1768) xxviii, 400 pages, 8” x 5”, 4th edition, lacking front board, rear board separated. Owner's signature on rear board pastedown. Light foxing and toning to pages. A fine presentation and association piece to this rare original c. 1768 Harvard College Bookplate Engraved By Nathaniel Hurd.
Nathaniel Hurd (1729-1777) was a Silversmith like his father, Jacob Hurd, to whom he was apprenticed from 1742 to 1751 in Boston, MA. He became particularly proficient as an engraver and styled himself "Goldsmith & Engraver" in his will. Paul Revere's account book of 1762 debited Hurd for "2 small scolop'd Salvers," a chafing dish, a pair of canns, a silver frame for a picture, and, uniquely, a "Silver Indian Pipe." Hurd cut a variety of metal printing plates for Harvard College, and a table of coins which must have been helpful to his contemporaries. He died unmarried in December, 1777.