The name Kelmscott bears a legendary and magical sound among bibliophiles. When William Morris founded the Kelmscott Press in 1890, he combined his medieval craft ideals with his skills as one of Britain's most sophisticated, progressive designers. He achieved his goal — the creation of books as beautiful as those of the Middle Ages — by abandoning many of the commercial practices of his day. Morris designed types of great elegance and reintroduced color into the body of the page, adding life to the printed word.
Even if there were enough copies for everyone who wanted one, the cost of original Kelmscott books is prohibitively expensive. For this reason, Dover Publications has reissued one of Morris's most noteworthy books in a photographic facsimile that retains the enchantment of the original edition. More than an exquisitely produced book, The Wood Beyond the World ranks among the finest of Morris's prose-romances, a wonderful fantasy in a medieval setting, brimming with high adventure and flights of fancy. This superbly illustrated novel was among the first to combine reality and the supernatural, and it served as inspiration for J. R. R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, and countless other fantasists.