Edinburgh: William Paterson, 1877-1878. First thus. Complete in six volumes, uniformly bound : Volumer I pp. xvi  349 ; nine illustrations : Volume II pp.xviii  351 ; five illustrations : Volume III pp. xx  362 ; four illustrations : Volume IV pp.ix  435  four illustrations : Volume V pp. xii  463 ; five illustrations : Volume VI pp.xxiv  391 ; four illustrations : red marbled endpapers : triple ruled turn-ins : a.e.g. : red morocco double gilt ruled with gilt thistles to each corner : five raised bands to each spine with each panel double gilt ruled and embellished with thistles ; dark brown leather title panel and light brown volume panel letteed in gilt : Initials W.S.S. to tail of each spine : blue and gold silk head bands : armorial bookplate of William Strange Steel to each volume.
Some light rubbing to leather; lower corners of volume one bumped; "Case D/Shelf 2" sticker to each paste-down; Steel's signature together with "88 Lancaster Gate / 27th March 1886" to each half title; Pencil note to the margin ov Volume III p.362 regarding the type of binding required; small bookbinder's sticker to the rear pastedown of each volume. Item #4465
The new "Library Edition" of Burns complete works, devoting three volumes to his poetry and three to his prose (including correspondences). A handsome set bound by the London Bookbinder's Cooperative Society Limited for William Strang Steel and with his initials to the tail of each spine.
William Strang Steel was a Glasgow merchant who had worked for British merchant houses in the Dutch East Indies and Burma. He founded 'W Strang Steel & Co' in Rangoon, Burma in 1870. Steel moved to London in 1873 and set up Steel Brothers & Co Ltd that took over the interests of the former company. Steel purchased the beautiful and historic estate of Philiphaugh,Selkirkshire, in the early 1890s and died there in 1911 at the age of 78. Before purchasing Philiphaugh he lived at 88 Lancaster Gate, London.