George Wither’s Emblem Book (1635)

The emblem book of English poet, pamphleteer, and satirist George Wither (1588 - 1667). Wither was employed by a London publisher called Henry Taunton to write English verses to expound the beautiful allegorical plates made by Gabriel Rollenhagen and Crispin van Passe more than 20 years earlier. Published in 1635, it coincided with the other most famous English book of emblems by Francis Quarles. Of Wither's mostly forgotten literary talents the Scottish author and poet George Gilfillan wrote that "Wither was a man of real genius, but seems to have been partially insane".