Source : Kraus

Source Title Americana Vetustissima, Catalogue 185
Description For half a century H.P. Kraus has been established at 16 East 46th Street, New York, in a five-story brownstone amid the skyscrapers of mid-town Manhattan. This small cultural oasis epitomizes the world of rare books whose inhabitants need, as well as scholarship and knowledge, the persistence and intuition of a good detective. In the words of the firm’s late founder, life in this field of rare books “involves research carrying one back through all of recorded history, across the world, and into just about every human activity.”

Some of the most magnificent achievements of Western civilization in the form of early manuscripts and printed books have passed through our hands. Treasures such as the Hours of Catherine of Cleves (Morgan Library), the Rothschild Apocalypse (Cloisters, MMA), the Giant Bible of Mainz (LC), the Gutenberg Bible and the Shakespeare Folios; libraries such as part of the enormous collection of Sir Thomas Phillipps, the princely library of Lichtenstein, and much of the ducal one of Arenberg. One rarity which eluded Hans Kraus all his life was finally acquired by the firm in 1991, and a copy of the 36-line Bible, much rarer than the Gutenberg Bible, is now in the W.H. Scheide library at Princeton.

As well as early manuscripts and incunabula, our stock includes European books on a variety of subjects from the sixteenth through the eighteenth centuries, early Americana, maps, and bibliography. We issue three or four catalogues yearly in different fields, and are always pleased to assist new collectors in those areas.
Scope of Text In an extraordinary tour-de-force the esteemed booksellers H. P. Kraus of New York City prepared an unusual catalogue of Americana to honor the five hundredth anniversary of Columbus arriving in the new world – Americana Vetustissima (Catalogue 185). To create this catalogue that they issued in 1991, they organized an absolutely extraordinary group of important pieces most of which date to within 50 years of Columbus’ discovery. Of course the first item is a Columbus Letter printed in Rome in the late spring of 1493. For those who love the earliest materials what follows is an absolute tour de force of absolutely impeccable examples. There’s a 1504 Vespucci Letter and a 1507 Waldseemuller, a 1521 Peter Martyr, a 1532 Cortes Letter and a 1553 Lopez de Gomara. To read this catalogue you could begin to think that such material is actually obtainable when in fact it is very rarely seen. For those who are momentarily transported back to a time when such material could be found, one is brought back to reality by the prices which reflect that these pieces, while rare in any condition, are themselves, in every case in this catalogue, condition rarities.

It is one thing to look through great catalogues of 75 years ago and think that a few dollars invested then would have yielded extraordinary returns today. But we all know that such materials haven’t just risen in price, they have also disappeared almost entirely.”
Total Records in AED 569
  • <b>Christie's London June 9th: Fine Printed Books and Manuscripts</b>
    <b>Christie's London June 9:</b> CASSATT, Mary (1844-1926). Document signed three times. Est. £3,000-5,000.
    <b>Christie's London June 9:</b> LENNON, John and Yoko ONO. Document signed ('John Lennon'; 'Yoko Ono'). Est. £4,000-6,000.
    <b>Christie's London June 9:</b><br>BOCHIUS, Joannes (1555-1609). Book describes in great detail ... visiting Archduke Albert of Austria and wife. Est. £3,000-5,000.
    <b>Christie's London June 9th: Fine Printed Books and Manuscripts</b>
    <b>Christie's London June 9:</b> CAVENDISH, William, 1st Duke of Newcastle (1592-1676). <i>A General System of Horsemanship in all its Branches.</i> Est. £3,500-4,500.
    <b>Christie's London June 9:</b> FERNÁN GONZÁLEZ,<i>Conde Fernan Gonzalez. Cronica del noble cavallero el conde Fernan Gonçalez.</i> Est. £5,000-£8,000.
    <b>Christie's London June 9:</b><br>SEWELL, Anna (1820-1878). <i>Black Beauty: His Grooms and Companions. The Autobiography of a Horse.</i><br>Est. £4,000-£6,000.
    <b>Christie's London June 9th: Fine Printed Books and Manuscripts</b>
    <b>Christie's London June 9:</b> WISDEN, John. <i>Cricketers' Almanack for 1898.</i> Est. £3,000-5,000.
    <b>Christie's London June 9:</b> IMPERATO, Ferrante (1550-1625). Historia Naturale. Venice: Combi & La Noù. Est. £2,500-3,500.
    <b>Christie's London June 9:</b><br>PEIGNOT, Etienne-Gabriel (1767-1849). Dictionaire raisonné de bibliologie. Paris: vols I-II = Villier, 1802. Est. £8,000-£12,000.
  • Lot 100: Beautifully preserved contemporary broadside of the Declaration of Independence. Estimate: $1,500,000-2,000,000
    Sotheby’s June 19. Lot 1: <br>Gutenberg Bible, the complete <br>Book of Esther, 1455, 8 leaves. <br>Estimate: $500,000-700,000
    Sotheby’s June 19. Lot 2: Flavius Josephus, Opera, 1470, first edition in Latin. Estimate: $100,000-150,000
    Sotheby’s June 19. Lot 15: Bonifacius VIII, Pont. Max. (Formerly Benedetto Gaetano), Liber sextus Decretalium, 1473, in contemporary Viennese binding. Estimate: $75,000-100,000
    Sotheby’s June 19. Lot 19: <br>Ansel Adams, Taos Pueblos, described by Ansel Easton Adams and described by Mary Austin,<br>1939. One of 100 copies, signed. Estimate: $30,000-40,000
    Sotheby’s June 19. Lot 29:<br>Ludwig Bemelmans, Parisian <br>street scene with Madeline, Miss Clavel and pupils. Original gouache and ink drawing, late 1950’s. Estimate: $25,000-35,000
    Sotheby’s June 19. Lot 40:<br>Charles Dickens, First edition<br>of Great Expectations, 1861. <br>Estimate: $80,000-120,000
    Sotheby’s June 19. Lot 50: Allen Ginsberg, Lenny Bruce, and other Beat authors, Collection of autographed and typed letters, 1950s-1970s . Est: $10,000-15,000
    Sotheby’s June 19. Lot 56: Hermann Hesse. autograph illustrated manuscript entitles Zwolf Gedichte, 1921. Estimate: $20,000-$30,000
    Sotheby’s June 19. Lot 69: Henri Matisse, autograph letter signed to his wife, Tangier, 1912, with original sketch for the painting Window in Tangier. Estimate: $15,000-20,000
    Sotheby’s June 19. Lot 79: Pablo Picasso, Luis de Gongora, Vingt Poèmes de Gongora, 1948.<br>Estimate: $10,000-15,000
    Sotheby’s June 19. Lot 99: The first book printing of the Declaration of Independence from Montesquieu’s library. Estimate: $300,000-500,000
    Sotheby’s June 19. Lot 100:<br>A Beautifully preserved contemporary broadside of the Declaration of Independence. Estimate: $1,500,000-2,000,000
    Sotheby’s June 19. Lot 122: Abraham Lincoln, An unrecorded letter to a Yale student dated May 27, 1858. Estimate: $50,000-70,000
    Sotheby’s June 19. Lot 144: George Washington, Autograph leaf from his discarded First Inaugural Address. Estimate: $175,000-275,000
    Sotheby’s June 19. Lot 150:<br>Roger Williams, The Bloudy <br>Tenent, London, 1644. A seminal work on religious freedom. <br>Estimate: $100,000-150,000
  • <b>Sotheby's Paris</b> Livres et Manuscrits, 25 June 2015: Aristophane
    <b>Sotheby's Paris</b> Livres et Manuscrits, 25 June 2015: Boccacio
    <b>Sotheby's Paris</b> Livres et Manuscrits, 25 June 2015: Bonnard
    <b>Sotheby's Paris</b> Livres et Manuscrits, 25 June 2015: Borges
    <b>Sotheby's Paris</b> Livres et Manuscrits, 25 June 2015: Dali
    <b>Sotheby's Paris</b> Livres et Manuscrits, 25 June 2015: De Gaulle
    <b>Sotheby's Paris</b> Livres et Manuscrits, 25 June 2015: Iliazd, Picasso, Giacometti
    <b>Sotheby's Paris</b> Livres et Manuscrits, 25 June 2015: Kerver
    <b>Sotheby's Paris</b> Livres et Manuscrits, 25 June 2015: Miro & Hirtz
    <b>Sotheby's Paris</b> Livres et Manuscrits, 25 June 2015: Molière
    <b>Sotheby's Paris</b> Livres et Manuscrits, 25 June 2015: Picasso & Level
  • <b>Shapero Rare Books:</b> Latest catalogue - The Russian Turmoil 1917-45: An Émigré perspective
    <b>Shapero Rare Books:</b> S. Anichkova, Baroness Taube, [The Enigma of Lenin]. Prague, c. 1934.
    <b>Shapero Rare Books:</b> V. Purishkevich [The Diary of State Duma Member Vladimir Mitrofanovich Purishkevich]. Riga, 1924.
    <b>Shapero Rare Books:</b> O. Kugusheva [Wolf Pack]. Berlin, 1940.
    <b>Shapero Rare Books:</b> B.M. Kuznetsov [To Please Stalin / 1945-1946]. Canada, 1968.
  • <b>19th Century Shop.</b> Catalogue 160: Magnificent Books, Manuscripts, & Photographs
    <b>19th Century Shop.</b> Shakespeare's First Folio (1623)
    <b>19th Century Shop.</b> Charles Darwin family photograph album
    <b>19th Century Shop.</b> Spectacular album of mammoth photos of the American West by Watkins & others
    <b>19th Century Shop.</b> Washington family copy of The Federalist (1788)
    <b>19th Century Shop.</b> Underground Railroad runaway broadside (1857)