Rare Book Monthly Articles - August - 2017 Issue

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Collections can get Complicated

I’ve known for many years that book collecting, if it was ever only books, is rarely books alone today.  Book collecting was once a huge field that required decades of experience.  Today informational databases approach Einstein levels of volume and complexity providing clear pictures of rarity and value while selling databases such as Abe Books and Biblio show enormous availability.  The word rare has always been a general term but the best databases today show it item by item, selling sites to tell you how many are available and RBH to tell you what the market is sayi...

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On Rare Book Hub: a reconsidered approach to Books for Sale

Over the past 15 years listing books on line has moved beyond the future into something embedded, like wallpaper, in the unfolding everyday reality of old and rare books.  Superlatives were co...

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The Hobby Lobby Case – Illegal Importation of Some of the World's Oldest Writings

A settlement has been reached in a smuggling case involving approximately 5,500 items from antiquity, some of the earliest "books" created, cuneiform tablets from the "cradle of civilization," toda...

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Bedazzled by Burney: Sales of Frances Burney Books, Manuscripts & Images from the Paula Peyraud Collection

This month, Rare Book Hub guest writer, Maureen E. Mulvihill, has written a useful piece on continuing strong values in Frances Burney (her books, manuscripts, associated visual art). Burney, a pop...

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U. S. Supreme Court to Rule on Attempt to Seize Ancient Persian Tablets from the University of Chicago's Oriental Institute

This is the month where the earliest "books" - ancient clay tablets – make their way into the news, legal news in particular. Not only was a settlement reached in the Hobby Lobby case (see ar...

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Summer: Searching in New York

The chance to visit New York City this past month reminded me anew that, for book collectors and those who do historical research both the New York Public Library and the New York Historical Societ...

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Aug. 2: Vintage Posters at Swann including WWI Propaganda in honor of the 100th anniversary of the U.S.'s entry

As their 2016-2017 auction season comes to a close, Swann Auction Galleries is going out with a bang. Taking place tomorrow (from the time of this Rare Book Monthly publishing), August 2nd at 10:30...

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MONA. This Is Not Your Typical Library Story

A three-story circular library has been proposed to house the collection of one of the more unusual book collectors you will ever find. His name is David Walsh, and he built his fortune the way vir...

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Aug. 5: Baseball, Almanacs, Historical Documents and more at Case Antiques

Case Antiques, the Knoxville, Tennessee based auction house has since 2015 included their relevant auction records in Rare Book Hub’s Transaction History database. The category of collectible...

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A Time to be Cautious

You can kind of feel it, the disconcerting energy of anxiety.  It’s a different kind of thing; somehow tapping into our primordial instincts.  There’s a sense of risk in some ...

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Chastellux’s Voyages: An Aristocrat in America.

Like many “generous aristocrats1”, the well-born Marquis de Chastellux went to America in 1780 to fight on the side of the insurgents during the War of Independence (1775-1783). There h...

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AbeBooks Posts the Top 10 Highest Prices Paid in April-June 2017

It was a testament to just how crazy much money collectors will spend on their passion. Sadly, it was not a testament to what people will spend on books, which is much more reasonable (that is, les...

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Summertime Fun & Browsing in the Book Arts

It’s August and in the Northern Hemisphere it’s Summer. Time for a little bookish R&R.
 
With that in mind here are some large and small collections displayed online and brou...

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The Brooklyn Antiquarian Book Fair in September

The rare book field is tradition laden.  The way things were is the way they will continue to be, that is unless you are Marvin Getman, the show promoter, who thinks carefully and works hard t...

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The New York Academy of Medicine is Set to Help You Pass Your Hogwarts O.W.L Exam

Books are a place where fantasy intersects with reality. There is perhaps no better example than the most popular children's book series of this century, the Harry Potter books. They are filled wit...

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Eight New Catalogues Reviewed for August

This month we review eight new catalogues. De Wolfe & Wood and Michael Brown Rare Books are offering an early printing of photographs taken by Walker Evans in Cuba in 1933. He developed this se...

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Charles Darwin on sexuality and the transmission of hereditary characteristics: Autograph Letter Signed to Lawson Tait. Down, 17 January [1877].
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> MILTON, JOHN. <i>Paradise Lost. A Poem written in ten books.</i> London: 1667. A very rare example with the contemporary binding untouched and with a 1667 title page.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Hamilton secures the ratification of the Constitution: <i>The Debates and Proceedings of the Convention of the State of New-York, assembled at Poughkeespsie, on the 17th June, 1788.</i>
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> The social contract “Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains”: ROUSSEAU, JEAN-JACQUES. <i>Principes du Droit Politique [Du Contract Social]</i>. Amsterdam: Michel Rey, 1762
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> “The first English textbook on geometrical land-measurement and surveying”: BENESE, RICHARD. <i>This Boke Sheweth the Maner of Measurynge All Maner of Lande…</i>
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:<br>Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Caius Julius Hyginus, <i>Poeticon Astronomicon,</i> first illustrated edition, Venice, 1482. $15,000 to $20,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Giovanni Botero, <i>Le Relationi Universali... divise in Sette Parti</i>, Venice, 1618. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> <i>L'Escole des Filles</i>, likely third edition of the first work of pornographic fiction in French, 1676. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:<br>Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Illuminated Book of Hours in Latin on vellum, Flanders, early 16th century. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Johannes Regiomontanus, <i>Calendarium,</i> Venice, 1485. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Pedro de Medina, <i>Libro d[e] gra[n]dezas y cosas memorables de España,</i> Alcalá de Henares, 1566. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:<br>Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b><br>Luis de Lucena, <i>Arte de Ajedres,</i> Salamanca, circa 1496-97. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Andrés Serrano, <i>Los Siete Principes de los Ángeles, válidos de Rey del Cielo,</i> Spain, 1707. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Johannes de Sacrobosco, <i>Sphaera mundi,</i> first illustrated edition, Venice, 1478. $15,000 to $20,000.
  • <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> A Rare 3-rotor German Enigma I Enciphering Machine. $70,000 to $90,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Important collection of correspondence between Werner Heisenberg and Bruno Rossi. $40,000 to $60,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Walt Whitman Autograph manuscript containing his thoughts on death. $20,000 to $30,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> David Roberts. <i>Holy Land</i>. Six volumes. 1842-1849. First edition. $15,000 to $25,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Extensive collection of Ray Bradbury's primary works, most signed or inscribed. $15,000 to $20,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Peter Force. Declaration of Independence. $12,000 to $18,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Steinbeck. <i>Grapes of Wrath</i>. A fine copy of the first edition. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Lewis & Clark. <i>Travels to the Source of the Missouri River</i>... First English edition, extra-illustrated. 1814. $10,000 to 15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> Manuscript document signed by Nuno de Guzman relating to Hernan Cortes, 1528. $8,000 to $12,000
    <b>Bonhams, Feb. 11:</b> “Nos los inquisidores..." The first book in English printed West of the Mississippi. [1787]. $5,000 to $8,000.

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