Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - June - 2012 Issue

Antiquarian Material from Samuel Gedge Ltd.

Gedge12

Catalogue XII from Samuel Gedge Ltd.

Samuel Gedge Ltd. Rare Books has now published their Catalogue XII. Gedge's catalogue is hardly limited to books. It is filled primarily with manuscripts and ephemeral items. What is common to the material is age. This is antiquarian material, often very old. It ranges from the 19th century all the way back to before printing. This is definitely a catalogue for the antiquarian. Here are a few of the items offered.

Being an indentured apprentice was not quite the same as slavery. At least it had a time limit, and there were a few more standards of care due from the master. Still, for however many years the young person was placed under control, freedom was very limited. Item 38 is the indenture document for William Harrison, a young man made apprentice to John Sarran of London, a distiller, in 1707. Hopefully, the young man at least got some free drinks, as he didn't get much else. Harrison was bound to Sarran for seven years, “during which term the said apprentice his said master shall faithfully serve, his secrets keep, his lawful commandments every where gladly do...he shall not commit fornication, nor contract matrimony within the said term. He shall not play at cards, dice, tables, or any other unlawful games, whereby his said master may have any losse...he shall not haunt taverns or playhouses...” In return, the master was obligated to provide food, lodging, and instruction in the trade. Priced at £350 (approximately $552 in U.S. currency).

Item 62 is related to 19 people who were far worse off than young Master Harrison. This is a letter from Malcolm Laing, attorney, to wealthy plantation owner William Philip Perrin. Laing advises Perrin that he has purchased 19 slaves on his behalf for his Jamaican plantation. He provides a list of the value of each slave, with the total coming to £1,395. The transaction was completed in the year 1780. £450 (US $710).

Here, now, is a document of freedom. It is a deed of manumission for a “villein,” a tenant farmer legally bound to the land during medieval times. The man was one John de Newdyke, and he received his freedom on December 28, 1409, during the Feast of the Holy Innocents. De Newdyke was now free to become a rent-paying farmer. He, and his descendants, would have to pay 13s 4d to their landlord, the Convent at Revesby, Lincolnshire, but would no longer have to serve it. Item 79. £1,250 (US $1,970).


Item 47 is a funeral invitation, typical of its time (1798). It includes a woodcut illustration on a sheet, with a blank center, wherein is written the specific instructions for the funeral. In this case, it states, “You are desired to accompany the corps of Mrs Susan Barrow from her late dwelling house in Little Marlborough Street to the parish church of St. James's Westminster...” It all seems a little ghoulish today, but was standard in the 18th century. We would not invite someone to accompany a corpse anymore, nor would we have a funeral invitation depicting a skull and crossbones, the Grim Reaper (not so grim here – he is smiling), a skeleton, an emptied hourglass, several more skulls, and the wording “Remember to Die.” Could we forget, even if we wanted? Was this message added by the funeral director, fearful of losing business? £850 (US $1,340).

Rare Book Monthly

  • <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
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> Violin belonging to Albert Einstein, presented to him by Oscar H. Steger, 1933. SOLD for $516,500
    <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
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> NEWTON, ISAAC. Autograph Manuscript in Latin, being detailed instructions on making the philosopher's stone. 8 pp. 1790s. SOLD for $275,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> 1869 Inauguration Bible of President Ulysses S. Grant. SOLD for $118,750
  • <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].
    <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>

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