Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - May - 2007 Issue

New Titles at Bauman Rare Books

Abauman

Some new acquisitions at Bauman Rare Books.


By Michael Stillman

Bauman Rare Books recently issued a catalogue of New Acquisitions for April 2007. It is also labeled "Catalogue Karnak," which must refer to something, though I know not what. The Egyptian temple by that name? Johnny Carson's Karnak the Magnificent? Actually, Carson spelled his Carnac with a couple of "C's," but this is a logical explanation. There are certainly many magnificent items in this collection of varied books and manuscripts. It is all exceptional material, such as these samples drawn from the 158 items now available.

Do you enjoy viewing works of art? How about 2,000 of them? Item 2 is The Iconic Dictionary of the Most Important Painters and Sculptors. This is a 12-volume, large folio set published in Philadelphia in 1912, filled with reproductions of the works of European masters. Only 26 lettered copies of this magnificent set were produced, this one being copy "K." Priced at $32,000.

You might think the British would have learned something from their colonists' misadventures in Salem, but no, they had to learn the hard way. Item 140 consists of two pamphlets from 1712 by Francis Bragge, Witchcraft Further Display'd... and A Full and Impartial Account of the Discovery of Sorcery and Witchcraft... Impartial? These pertain to the witchcraft trial of Jane Wenham, and Bragge had little doubt of her guilt. Like the Salem "witches," Mrs. Wenham was accused of sending children into spells as well as causing the death of livestock. She apparently once made a threatening statement that implied she had other ways to get back at people, and supposedly manufactured some magic potions out of corpses. I'm just reporting what they said. You decide. However, she was only tried on one count -- speaking with the Devil, who took the form of a cat. As anyone who owns a cat knows, they can be diabolical creatures. As ridiculous as this sounds, a jury of her peers, who must have been even loonier than she, convicted Mrs. Wenham. She was sentenced to death, but the skeptical Judge sought a pardon from Queen Anne, which was granted. Judge Powell is noted for his comment at trial, when it was related that Mrs. Wenham could fly --"there is no law against flying." The pamphlets are priced at $4,200.

Here is another case of the English not listening to their colonial brethren -- the 1776 bound edition of 12 volumes of The Gentleman's Magazine, and Historical Chronicle. The August edition includes one of the earliest British printings (perhaps the first) of the Declaration of Independence. There it was for King George to see, but he sent his troops off on a losing effort anyway. Item 28. $8,800.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Luis de Lucena, <i>Arte de Ajedres,</i> first edition of the earliest extant manual on modern chess, Salamanca, circa 1496-97. Sold for $68,750.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Carte-de-visite album with 83 images of prominent African Americans & abolitionists, circa 1860s. Sold for $47,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Gustav Klimt, <i>Das Werk,</i> Vienna & Leipzig, 1918. Sold for $106,250.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Man Ray, <i>[London Transport] – Keeps London Going,</i> 1938. Sold for $149,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Thomas Jefferson, Letter Signed, to Major-General Nathanael Greene, promising reinforcements against Cornwallis, 1781. Sold for $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Nicolas de Fer, <i>L’Amerique Divisee Selon Letendue de ses Principales Parties,</i> Paris, 1713. Sold for $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Russell H. Tandy, <i>The Secret in the Old Attic,</i> watercolor, pencil & ink, 1944. Sold for $35,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Ernest Hemingway, <i>Three Stories & Ten Poems,</i> first edition of the author's first book, Paris, 1923. Sold for $23,750.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries:</b> Walker Evans, <i>River Rouge Plant,</i> silver print, 1947. Sold for $57,500.
  • <b>Bonhams: September 25, New York</b>
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Ernst, Max. <i>Mr. Knife and Miss Fork</i>. Paris, 1932. DELUXE EDITION. Sold for $15,625
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Cage, John. Autograph musical leaf from his Concert for Piano and Orchestra, NY, 1958. Sold for $18,750
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Cage, John. Autograph musical leaf from his Concert for Piano and Orchestra, NY, 1958. Sold for $18,750
    <b>Bonhams: September 25, New York</b>
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Einstein, Albert. Signed Passport Photo for his US citizenship application. Bermuda, 1935. Sold for $17,500
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Verard, Antoine. Illuminated printed Book of Hours. Paris, 1507. Sold for $7,500
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Wetterkurzschlussel. German Weather Report Codebook - for Enigma use. Berlin, 1942. Sold for $225,000
    <b>Bonhams: September 25, New York</b>
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Morelos y Pavon, Jose Maria. Autograph letter signed to El Virrey Venegas, February 5, 1812. Sold for $6,250
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Milne, A.A. Complete set of <i>Winnie-the-Pooh</i> books. 4 volumes. All first issue points. London, 1924-1928. Sold for $5,250
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> A 48-star American Flag, battle worn flown at Guadalcanal and Peleliu, 1942-1944. Sold for $35,000
    <b>Bonhams, June 12 results:</b> Locke, John. Autograph Letter Signed mourning the death of his friend, William Molyneaux, 2 pp, October 27, 1698. Sold for $20,000
  • <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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