Fanciful Reader

a book blog about romance and more. . .

Category: antique children’s books

Antique children’s books provide a fun way to glimpse the past

However, antique children’s books such as those written in the 19th century were not fun reading by today’s standards. Instead, they were often cautionary tales with a moral at the end. Definitely designed to be instructive rather than entertaining.

Another fact that’s interesting but not so fun—

Literature for young people from that time period often did not have illustrations–a far cry from today’s popular comics and graphic novels!

One of the first well-known artists to add illustrations to books for youth in the late 1800s was Randolph Caldecott (Randolph Caldecott’s Picture Books), whose name was given to the prestigious Caldecott Award.

Studying vintage literature gives us valuable insights into how children of that time period lived and how their parents raised them. For example, moral tales with a religious tone tell us that good conduct was a very important part of education.

The cover art and other design elements of antique books for young people often have details that reflect the style preferences of the period. For that reason, and simply because of their beauty and uniqueness, they are popular collectors items.

Whether you’re a collector, casual reader, parent, or educator, you’ll find a lot of useful information in these works. Plus, preserving and studying antique children’s books gives you important lessons that you can pass on to future generations.