Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - January - 2012 Issue

Mapping London from Daniel Crouch Rare Books

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London maps from Daniel Crouch Rare Books.

Daniel Crouch Rare Books has just issued their Catalogue III, Mapping London. Crouch is a specialist in maps and the associated types of material, such as sea charts, plans, atlases and globes. They focus on antiquarian examples, though there are a few items this time that make it into the last century. In this catalogue, Crouch has centered on one small corner of the globe, the city of London, and occasionally, a few miles of surrounding lands. Since most maps are targeted right on the city, as it follows the banks and bend in the River Thames, thumbing through this catalogue gives a bird's eye view of how much the city has grown over the four centuries from the 15th through the 19th century. Naturally, a current map would show much greater expansion still, but London looks barely more than a large village 400 to 500 years ago.

As Crouch notes in their introduction, “Within these pages you will find 100 plans showing London's rapid development, from the Tudors to the Windsors. You will see London the glutton, purged by fire, the home of the rich as well as the poor, and a refuge and opportunity for strangers.” The city has changed dramatically, socially, politically, culturally, economically, and just about ever other way, but as these maps show, the Thames still runs through its heart and London is still London.

We will start with what Crouch calls “the earliest extant plan of London.” It wasn't even printed in England. First published in 1572, this is a 1574 Cologne printing of Georg Braun and Franz Hogenberg's Londinium Feracissmi Angliae Regni Metropolis. This is a bird's eye view taken from a point somewhat south of the Thames. London is described as “famed amongst many peoples for its commerce, adorned with houses and churches, distinguished by fortifications, famed for men of all arts and sciences, and lastly for its wealth in all things.” There is also a paean to the Hanseatic League, on whose behalf the map was likely first produced. While the Braun and Hogenberg version was first published in 1572, it is evidently based on an earlier map, of which only a part remains. Such features as St. Paul's spire, which was destroyed in 1561, indicate this depicts London in the 1550s. Part of this map is shown on the catalogue's cover. Item 1. Priced at £9,500 (British pounds, or about US $14,873).

This plan, while already a bit out of date when published, was the basis for several other later maps in the catalogue. For example, item 2, published in Amsterdam almost a century later, in 1657, is almost identical. Mapmaker Johannes Janssonius (Jansson) had acquired the Braun and Hogenberg plates. He made some changes, though not to the depiction of London itself. He removed the title at the top, leaving the area essentially bare, and replaced the drawing of four Londoners at the bottom contained in the original and there inserted his own title – Londinum Vulgo London. £3,000 (US $4,695).

Item 11 is Marcus Doornick's Platt Grandt der Stadt London. It was published in 1666, one the most important, and devastating years in the city's history. That was the year of the Great Fire, and Doornick's map depicts the aftermath. Fanned by strong winds, there were limited options available to firefighters in the days before firetrucks and large water hoses. It was only finally put out by blowing up buildings to create a firebreak, but by this time, much of the city was gone. The heart of the city lies empty on this map. The streets are still shown, but the buildings are gone. Most of the city's residents lost their homes in the fire, though Londoners quickly set about the task of rebuilding their city. Below the map, there is accompanying text about the fire in three languages – Dutch, French, and English. £2,500 (US $3,913).

Item 40 is a massive, intricately detailed plan of London: A Plan of the Cities of London and Westminster and Borough of Southwark, with the Contiguous Buildings. From an Actual Survey taken by John Roque, Land Surveyor and engraved by John Pine. Published in 1746, it took Roque nine years to plat the city, and one wonders how he was able to do it so quickly. It was built on a scale of 26 inches to the mile, and printed on 24 sheets. All told, it measures about 80” x 150”. £20,000 (US $31,261).

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> E.H. SHEPARD, Original drawing for A.A. Milne’s The House at Pooh Corner.<br>$40,000-60,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> BERNARD RATZER, Plan of the City of New York in North America, surveyed in the years 1766 & 1767. $80,000-100,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> THOMAS JEFFERSON, Autograph letter signed comparing Logan, Tecumseh, and Little Turtle to the Spartans. Monticello: 15 February 1821. $14,000-18,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> JOHN C. FREMONT, Narrative of the Exploring Expedition to the Rocky Mountains, in the Year 1842.. Abridged edition, the only one containing the folding map From the Sporting Library of Arnold “Jake” Johnson. $3,000-5,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> ZANE GREY, Album containing 94 large format photographs of Grey and party at Catalina Island, Arizona, and fishing in the Pacific. From the Sporting Library of Arnold “Jake” Johnson. $5,000-$8,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> WILLIAM COMBE, A History of Madeira ... illustrative of the Costumes, Manners, and Occupations of the Inhabitants. produced by Ackermann in 1821; From the Sporting Library of Jake Johnson. $2,000-$3,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> ERIC TAVERNER, Salmon Fishing... One of 275 copies signed by Taverner, published in 1931,From the Sporting Library of Jake Johnson. $2,000-$3,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> JOHN WHITEHEAD, Exploration of Mount Kina Balu, North Borneo. Whitehead reached the high point of Kinabalu in 1888. Part of a major group of travel books from the Sporting Library of Jake Johnson. $2,000-$3,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> JOHN LONG, Voyages and Travels of an Indian Interpreter and Trader, describing the Manners and Customs of the North American Indians... The first edition of 1791. $3,000-$5,000
    <b>Doyle, April 25:</b> SAMUEL BECKETT, Stirrings Still. This, Beckett’s last work of fiction with original lithographs by Le Brocquy, limited to 200 copies signed by the author and the artist. From the Estate of Howard Kaminsky.. $1,500-$2,500
  • <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].
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    <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 Apr 26:</b> Jacques-Émile Ruhlmann, wallpaper sample book, circa 1919. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Archive from a late office of the Breuer & Smith architectural team, New York, 1960-70s. $3,500 to $5,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> William Morris, <i>The Story of the Glittering Plain or the Land of Living Men,</i> illustrated by Walter Crane, Kelmscott Press, Hammersmith, 1894. $2,500 to $3,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Gustave Doré, <i>La Sainte Bible selon la Vulgate,</i> Tours, 1866. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Gustav Klimt & Max Eisler, <i>Eine Nachlese,</i> complete set, Vienna, 1931. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b><br>Eric Allatini & Gerda Wegener, <i>Sur Talons Rouges,</i> with original watercolor by Wegener, Paris, 1929. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b><br>C.P. Cavafy, <i>Fourteen Poems,</i> illustrated & signed by David Hockney, London, 1966. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b> Jean Midolle, <i>Spécimen des Écritures Modernes...</i>, Strasbourg, 1834-35. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Apr 26:</b><br>E.A. Seguy, <i>Floréal: Dessins & Coloris Nouveaux,</i> Paris, 1925. $3,000 to $4,000.
  • <b>Bonhams: Results from Fine Books and Manuscripts on March 9, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> BEETHOVEN, LUDWIG VAN. Autograph Manuscript sketch-leaf part of the score of the Scottish Songs, "Sunset" Op. 108 no 2. [Vienna, February 1818]. Inscribed by Alexander Wheelock Thayer. SOLD for $131,250
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    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> EINSTEIN, ALBERT. Autograph Letter Signed ("Papa") to his son Hans Albert, discussing his involvement with the atomic bomb, September 2, 1945. SOLD for $106,250
    <b>Bonhams: Results from Fine Books and Manuscripts on March 9, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> HAMILTON, ALEXANDER. Autograph Letter Signed, to Baron von Steuben, with extensive notes of Von Steuben's aide Benjamin Walker, June 12, 1780. SOLD for $16,250
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    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> 1869 Inauguration Bible of President Ulysses S. Grant. SOLD for $118,750

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