The Legend of The Great Omar

One of my favorite journals from Peter Pauper's new spring list is called The Great Omar. Its design is inspired by a magnificent 1911 binding created for the poetry classic, The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam. The Great Omar was crafted by London bindery Sangorski & Sutcliffe, the ''Rolls-Royce'' of bookbinding. Founded in 1901, Sangorski & Sutcliffe was known for its fabulous creations and is still renowned for its traditional artistry and craftmanship. A team of artisans worked on "The Great Omar" for more than two years; when complete, it was considered the most elaborate binding ever made. It was embellished with more than one thousand precious and semi-precious jewels and one hundred square feet of gold leaf. Unbelievably, this wondrous treasure sank with the Titanic on April 15, 1912 (it is considered one of the most valuable objects lost with the doomed ship) and passed into bookbinding legend. The binding has been re-created twice; the British Library is home to the most recent version. You'll find out more about the history of Sangorski & Sutcliffe and their work here.

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