At least seven different editions:
1. Deluxe maroon boards. Seems like all copies of this printing are signed by Dame Nellie
(some had a tipped-in plate, with a persoanlised dedication and Nellie's signature - possibly all the copies with dedication pages added were presented to the contributors to the book. The artists and writers) :
Meaning, that there is every chance Ida or Annie or both would have had copies dedicated to them and perhaps those copies still exist today somewhere. - they would be real treasures. - Has anyone got them or knows about them ?
2. Dark green boards with illustrated dust-jacket (Melba portrait)
3. Light green boards (most common edition)
4. Blue boards with horizontal lines (circular design under 'Melba's Gift Book')
5. Plain Dark-Blue boards.
6. E. W. Cole wrappered edition. Dark-
green with gold lettering. Probably remainders. However, a very rare edition.
7. E. W. Cole wrappered edition. Dark-
brown with gold lettering. Probably remainders. However, a very rare edition.
Melba sometimes signed editions other than the first edition.
Celebrate the work of some of Australia’s most important
and well-known artists and authors and discover how they
helped our “Queen of Song” create Melba’s Gift Book of
Australian Art and Literature.
Showcasing original works from this popular book,
published in 1915 in aid of the Belgian Relief Fund. You
are invited to explore the idea of charity and what it
meant in wartime and what it means today.
“Among the many ‘Gift Books’ published…Madam Melba’s
book, issued by the great songbird…is easily the best.”
Blue Mountain Echo 13 August 1915
CHARITY Melba’s Gift Book 1915
Official Opening Thu 26 Oct 6–8pm
Yarra Ranges Regional Museum
35–37 Castella St, Lilydale
RSVP [email protected]
For extensive program of events and talks, see website
Madame Melba, c.1915 (detail), Florence Rodway, pastel on paper
Reproduced courtesy of Simon Collins