[Vienna]: Wilhelm Melzer, 1909. Oblong album, measuring 5.5 x 6.5 inches. Full ivory kidskin, decorated with the arms of Vienna in gilt, black and red; patterned endpapers with Viennese cross motif printed in red, tan, and gilt; all edges gilt. Decorative title, one page of text, and 12 tissue-guarded color lithographic plates printed on card, bound on linen stubs. Original card box with hinged lid, printed in black and gilt, with ivory silk grosgrain ties. Light soiling to box, with one corner dampstained.
First edition of this lavishly printed volume, a favor produced for the ladies attending the 1909 Viennese state ball. Designed in modern Secessionist style, the volume commemorates the centenary of the Battle of Aspern-Essling, when the Viennese army under the Archduke Charles successfully drove Napoleon’s forces back across the Danube. The vibrant historical plates are the work of Wiener Werkstätte artist Remigius Geyling (1878-1974). Several of the images feature the composer Josef Haydn, who died in Vienna just days after the battle: Haydn’s score for the Austrian national anthem is included, as well as a poem by Viennese historian Hermann Hango. A fine copy of a remarkable fine-press production.