Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - January - 2010 Issue

German Australiana from Harbeck Rare Books

Harbeckgerman aust

German Australiana and Pacifica.


By Michael Stillman

This month we review our first catalogue from Harbeck Rare Books of Brisbane, Australia. It comes with the unusual title German Australiana & Pacifica (1702-1971). I will admit that I don't usually associate Germany with Australia. The most notable early explorations were by the Englishman James Cook, Matthew Flinders did some of the most extensive explorations, and it was Britain that originally colonized the continent-island as a penal colony. French voyager William Dampier was there even earlier, La Perouse visited, and those seeking the missing La Perouse charted part of the Australian coast. And way back, before the land was known as Australia, it was called New Holland. So what is the German connection? There appear to be basically two types of material in this catalogue. The earlier material is mostly German translations of seminal works concerning the area. Then, from the middle of the 19th to the early 20th century we have accounts of visits by numerous German scientists and adventurers, people who are not household names, but those who came to study or explore the land, and wrote about what they saw. The vast majority of the works found in this catalogue are written in the German language, but the catalogue itself is written in English. Here are some examples of what you will find.

Item 1 is an account of William Dampier's circumnavigation, Neue Reise um die Welt. This rare 1701 German edition was translated from the 1698 French edition. Dampier landed on the northwest coast of what was then known as New Holland (this area became known "Dampier Land"). Dampier went on land and visited an island where he encountered 40 aborigines. Priced at AU $4,950 (Australian dollars, or roughly $4,537 in U.S. dollars).

Among the earliest German emigrants to Australia were Prussian Lutherans, seeking to avoid a forced combination with the Reformed Church. Item 15 is an English language, London imprint concerning the German Lutherans: Persecution of the Lutheran Church in Prussia, from the year 1831, to the present time; Compiled from German publications. These articles were compiled by Augustus Kavel and published in 1840. They recount the "seizure" of a Lutheran Church and describe the voyage and reception of the emigrants who came to South Australia. $850. (US $779).

Item 10 is "the earliest separate publication on Australia published for children." The title is Naturforschende Geslellschaft Zurich, by Johann Jakob Romer. It was published in 1804. This was an annual natural history publication for children, published in Zurich. The 1804 edition was devoted entirely to New Holland, and contains information about Cook's voyages, Aborigines, and the native flora and fauna. Romer was a physician and botanist who was Director of the Botanic Gardens at the University of Zurich. AU $7,150 (US $6,553).

Joseph Lauterer was another botanist, though one who wrote about Australia a century later. He served as a lecturer in botany in Brisbane for a few years around the turn of the century, but traveled widely around the land, making observations on the botany and zoology, geology, topography and the Aborigines. His book, published in 1900, is Australien und Tasmanien. Item 65. $225 (US $206).

Rare Book Monthly

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    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Caius Julius Hyginus, <i>Poeticon Astronomicon,</i> first illustrated edition, Venice, 1482. $15,000 to $20,000.
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    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Illuminated Book of Hours in Latin on vellum, Flanders, early 16th century. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Johannes Regiomontanus, <i>Calendarium,</i> Venice, 1485. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Pedro de Medina, <i>Libro d[e] gra[n]dezas y cosas memorables de España,</i> Alcalá de Henares, 1566. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:<br>Early Printed, Medical, Scientific & Travel Books</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b><br>Luis de Lucena, <i>Arte de Ajedres,</i> Salamanca, circa 1496-97. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Andrés Serrano, <i>Los Siete Principes de los Ángeles, válidos de Rey del Cielo,</i> Spain, 1707. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 8:</b> Johannes de Sacrobosco, <i>Sphaera mundi,</i> first illustrated edition, Venice, 1478. $15,000 to $20,000.
  • <b>Bonhams: Fine Books and Manuscripts. 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. $80,000 to $120,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> Violin belonging to Albert Einstein, presented to him by Oscar H. Steger, 1933. $100,000 to $150,000
    <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. $100,000 to $150,000
    <b>Bonhams: Fine Books and Manuscripts. 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. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> NEWTON, ISAAC. Autograph Manuscript in Latin, being detailed instructions on making the philosopher's stone. 8 pp. 1790s. $200,000 to 300,000
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    <b>Leland Little, Mar. 3:</b> Copper Printing Plate for "Marshall's Household Engraving of Washington." $500 to $1000
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    <b>Leland Little: Important Spring Auction. March 3, 2018</b>
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    <b>Leland Little, Mar. 3:</b> Maurice Dufrène (French, 1876-1955), <i>Rayon des Soieries</i>. $400 to $800
    <b>Leland Little, Mar. 3:</b> William Pope.L (American, b. 1955), <i>Intimacy Project</i>. $2,000 to $4,000
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    <b>Dominic Winter, March 9:</b> One of several lots of Henri Cartier-Bresson gelatin silver prints, £200-300
    <b>Dominic Winter, March 9:</b> Vintage gelatin silver print of Diego Rivera by Leonard McCombe, £300-500
    <b>Dominic Winter, March 9:</b> Albumen print portrait by Julia Margaret Cameron of Sir John Herschel (April, 1867), £30,000-50,000
    <b>Dominic Winter, March 9:</b> Albumen print by Julia Margaret Cameron, Love, 1864 (from the Norman album), £1000-1500
    <b>Dominic Winter, March 9:</b> Albumen print by Lewis Carroll of Twyford School Eleven (Summer Term, 1859), £1000-1500
    <b>Dominic Winter, March 9:</b> Albumen print portrait by Lewis Carroll of Xie Kitchin as 'Dane' (Oxford, 1873), £500-800
    <b>Dominic Winter, March 9:</b> Calotype print (c1845) by Hill & Adamson of Lady Elizabeth (Rigby) Eastlake, £3000-4000
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