Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - October - 2016 Issue

Natural History, Nations, History and Travel from Antiquariat Kainbacher

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Katalog VII from Antiquariat Kainbacher.

This month we received out first catalogue from Antiquariat Kainbacher of Baden, Austria. This is their Katalog VII. As you might suspect, the catalogue is written in German, so some familiarity with the language would be very helpful. The books themselves are mostly in German, but not entirely so. English and French make occasional appearances.

 

The catalogue is divided into two sections. The shorter first section is Naturalis Historia, or Natural History, the longer second section covers De terrarum gentiumque historia deque peregrinatione, or nations of the world, history and travel. Here are a few of the books we found in this catalogue.

 

We begin with an important and pioneering study of meteorites. Peter Simon Pallas was a German professor called on by Catherine the Great to teach at the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences. He traveled around the country collecting specimens of natural history. One of those he found was a huge meteorite. No one was certain of their origin at the time, the predominant belief being they were volcanic in origin. Enter Ernst Chladni. He had a different theory. He described it in this 1794 book, Ueber den Ursprung der von Pallas gefundenen und anderer ihr ähnlicher Eisenmassen... (On the origin of the iron masses found by Pallas and others similar to it...). Chladni, whose primary expertise was in the field of acoustics and musical instruments, believed meteorites came from outer space. The theory was extremely controversial at the time and subjected Chladni to his share of ridicule. However, after a meteorite was observed crashing to earth in England, and some others similarly in France, and they were then examined, scientists came to realize that Chladni correctly understood their origin. Priced at €25,000 (euros, or approximately $28,065 in U.S. dollars).

 

This next book presents the most important compendium of early voyages ever assembled. Its collection of early American voyages is second in importance only to the Columbus letter, but it also presents the account of Vasco da Gama's trip to India, of comparable significance to Asian discovery. The compiler was Fracanzano da Montalboddo, an Italian scholar from Montalboddo (now known as Ostra), about whom little is known. His account was first published in Italian in 1507. This is the first German edition, from 1508, titled Newe vnbekanthe landte Und ein newe weldte in kurtz verganger zeythe erfunden (new land and new world...). Among the voyages herein described are the first three of Columbus, the third of Vespucci, da Gama's exploration of Africa, Arabia, and India, Cabral's discoveries in South America, the earliest explorations of the west African coast dating back to the 1450's and 1460's, a voyage to Greenland, and others. Da Gama's travels, which within a few decades would lead to European domination of lands from Arabia to India, were first reported in this collection of voyages. Interestingly, Fracanzano refers to his countryman and contemporary, Amerigo Vespucci, as Alberto. If he was correct, Americans may need to change the name of their country for the sake of historical accuracy. €250,000 (US $280,646).

 

Richard Burton was England's most notable explorer of the 19th century. His most important discoveries were in the Africa and the Middle East, including a rare visit by a westerner to Mecca (that was illegal – he had to disguise himself as an Pakistani Muslim). He did journey to America on one occasion. In the early 1860's, he was named British consul to the island of Fernando Po, off the west coast of Africa (today part of Equatorial Guinea). It was not a prestigious assignment and Burton used every chance he could to visit the mainland for more exploring. He wrote about such an adventure a decade later, Two Trips to Gorilla Land and the Cataracts of the Congo, published in 1876. It contains information about his trips and the customs of the natives, as seen through not entirely objective British eyes. However, Burton failed in his major goal, to capture a gorilla. He was fascinated by the animals, but never saw one outside of a cage. €6,000 (US $6,737).

 

Here is a British explorer from the prior century. Well, he wasn't so much an explorer, though he did circumnavigate the globe. He was more a pirate, though he was officially an admiral in the British Navy. George Anson was sent to harass and steal from Spanish shipping out of South America in 1740. This was the time of the infamous War of Jenkins' Ear, and England intended to make Spain pay big time for snipping off Mr. Jenkins' ear. Anson set out for South America with eight ships. By the time he made it through the Straits of Magellan, he was down to two, the others either having sunk or been turned back by winds. One more had to be abandoned along the west coast of the continent. Meanwhile, Anson had very little to show for his efforts and the loss of lives and ships. His mission would have been deemed a terrible failure were it not for his capturing a Spanish ship near Manila, which turned out to be loaded with treasure. Anson returned home a hero and a rich man. Never mind that only 188 of the 1,854 men he took made it home alive. Collateral damage. Taking so much treasure from the Spanish was sufficient to make him a hero and an admiral. This is the German translation of Anson's account, published in 1749, a year after the first edition: Des Herrn Admirals, Lord Ansons Reise um die Welt... €2,900 (US $3,257).

 

Antiquariat Kainbacher can be reached at 0043-(0)699-110 19 221 or paul.kainbacher@kabsi.at. Their website is found at www.antiquariat-kainbacher.at.

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 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

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