• <center><b>Dominic Winter<br>October 12th<br>Printed Books, Stamps & Documents, Maps, Travel & Exploration
    <b>Dominic Winter, Oct. 12:</b> Hottot (Robert). <i>French explorer and collector.</i> An original illustrated manuscript diary by Hottot of his expedition along the Congo River to Lake Chad, 1908-1909, £700-1,000
    <b>Dominic Winter, Oct. 12:</b> Japan. Ino Tadataka (after), Kokugun Zenzu (Complete Atlas of Japan), 2 volumes, circa 1838, £500-800
    <b>Dominic Winter, Oct. 12:</b> Khatib al-Tibrizi (Muhammad b. 'Abd Allah). <i>Mishcat-ul-masabih</i> or a collection of the most authentic traditions, regarding the actions and sayings of Muhammed; 2 volumes, Calcutta, 1809-1810, £1,500-2,000
    <center><b>Dominic Winter<br>October 12th<br>Printed Books, Stamps & Documents, Maps, Travel & Exploration
    <b>Dominic Winter, Oct. 12:</b> Roberts (David). <i>The Holy Land, Syria, Idumea, Arabia, Egypt & Nubia,</i> 1st quarto edition, 6 volumes in 3, London: Day & Son, 1855-56, £2,000-3,000
    <b>Dominic Winter, Oct. 12:</b> Tocqueville (Alexis de). <i>De la Démocratie en Amérique,</i> volumes 1 & 2 (of 4), 1st edition, Paris: Charles Gosselin, 1835, £2,000-3,000
    <b>Dominic Winter, Oct. 12:</b> Torquemada (Juan de). <i>Primera[-tercera] parte de los veinte i un libros rituales i monarchia Indiana,</i> 3 volumes, 2nd edition, Madrid: Nicolas Rodriguez Franco, 1723, £2,000-3,000
    <center><b>Dominic Winter<br>October 12th<br>Printed Books, Stamps & Documents, Maps, Travel & Exploration
    <b>Dominic Winter, Oct. 12:</b> Donovan (Edward). <i>The Natural History of British Insects,</i> 16 volumes bound in 8, London: F and C Rivington, 1793-1813, £1,500-2,000
    <b>Dominic Winter, Oct. 12:</b> Fuchs (Leonhart). <i>New Kreüterbuch,</i> 1st edition in German, Basel: Michael Isingrin, 1543, £7,000-10,000
    <b>Dominic Winter, Oct. 12:</b> Spain & Portugal. Ptolemy (Claudius), <i>Secunda Europe Tabula,</i> Rome [1478 - 1509], £1,000-2,000
    <center><b>Dominic Winter<br>October 12th<br>Printed Books, Stamps & Documents, Maps, Travel & Exploration
    <b>Dominic Winter, Oct. 12:</b> World. Gill (Macdonald), <i>La Carta del Atlantico,</i> George Philip & Son Ltd in collaboration with the Time and Tide Publishing Company Ltd, circa 1943, £1,500-2,000
    <b>Dominic Winter, Oct. 12:</b> Vinegar Bible [English]. <i>The Holy Bible, Containing the Old Testament and the New,</i> Oxford: John Baskett, 1717/1716, £700-1,000
    <b>Dominic Winter, Oct. 12:</b> Mill (John Stuart). <i>The Subjection of Women,</i> 1st edition, presentation copy, London: Longmans, Green, Reader, and Dyer, 1869, £700-1,000
  • <center><b>Swann Auction Galleries<br>Early Printed Books<br>October 13, 2022
    <b>Swann October 13:</b> Miguel de Cervantes, <i>The History of Don-Quichote (Quixote), The First & Second Part,</i> London, 1620. $30,000 to $40,000
    <b>Swann October 13:</b> Jacques Lagniet, <i>Recueil des Plus Illustres Proverbes, Divisés en Trois Livre,</i> first edition, Paris, 1657-63. $25,000 to $35,000.
    <b>Swann October 13:</b> William Shakespeare, <i>Comedies, Histories, and Tragedies,</i> fourth folio, London, 1685. $60,000 to $80,000.
    <b>Swann October 13:</b> Ramon Llull, <i>Liber de Ascensu et Decensu Intellectus,</i> first edition, Valencia, 1512. $5,000 to $7,000.
    <b>Swann October 13:</b> Geoffrey Chaucer, <i>The Workes of Geffray Chaucer Newlye Printed,</i> London, 1542. $30,000 to $50,000.

Rare Book Monthly

Articles - April - 2012 Issue

Travel Books Auction at Drouot, Paris


Pierre Berge's auction at Drouot.


China stands amongst the most fashionable destinations in travel books nowadays and the 16 engravings representing the conquests of the Emperor of China (1 in-folio album and 24 plates printed in Paris in 1788, and bound in modern half-morocco) went for 14,000 euros. “This was a good surprise, said Mr. Forgeot. I think it never made such a price before.” On the contrary, other books about China made reasonable prices such as Ceva’s Réflexions sur les affaires présentes de la Chine (1 vol., old morocco, circa 1709 – 800 euros), or Le Comte’s Nouveaux Mémoires sur l’état présent de la Chine (3 vol. in contemporary morocco, Paris 1697-98 – 7,800 euros). Du Halde’s Description géographique, historique, chronologique, politique, et physique de l’empire de la Chine et de la Tartarie chinoise (4 volumes in-folio, Paris 1735) did not meet the reserve price and was retrieved at 18,000 euros.

The West Indies remain a sure value as two bidders fought hard for a very fine copy of Du Tertre’s Histoire Générale des Antilles habitées par les François (3 vol. in-4°, full contemporary calf, Paris 1667-71 – 11,500 euros) while the classic work of Labat, Nouveau Voyage aux isles de l’Amérique (6 vol. in-12°, full contemporary calf and the coat of arms of La Rochefoucauld on each board, a very fine copy) went for 11,800 euros. “This price is fully justified, Mr. Forgeot said. It is a very valuable book and it is very rare to find it with armories.” Charlevoix’s Histoire de l’isle espagnole ou de S. Domingue (2 volumes in-4°, full contemporary calf, a very fine copy – 4,500 euros) went beyond the appraisal of Mr. Forgeot while Bossu’s Nouveaux voyages aux Indes occidentales (1 vol. in full contemporary calf) never reached the appraisal of 4,000 euros, culminating at 3,800 euros. In fact, it was not “adjugé”. “This is incredible,” Mr Forgeot. underlined. “This is an exceptional book. Bossu’s Voyages is not that rare, but it is a very interesting read to start with. Plus, our copy is stamped with Mme Du Deffand’s golden cats on the back!” This “dame” (1697-1780) is very famous as an “esprit des Lumières”. D’Alembert, Montesquieu, Voltaire, Fontenelle, Marivaux or Horace Walpole were amongst her acquaintances and would attend her “salon” in Paris. In 1767, she went blind and asked her niece, Julie de Lespinasse, to live with her and to read her some books. “She certainly read this copy to her aunt”, stated the expert in the catalogue. “Books with this golden cat stamp are so few,” Mr. Forgeot continued. “Mostly a travel book of this quality.” Another deception came with Andrade’s Lettere annue del Tibet... (Rome, 1628) which did not meet the reserve at 2,800 euros.

The last part of the auction focused on some beautiful travel books from the early 19th century such as Milbert’s Itinéraire pittoresque du fleuve Hudson... (2 vol. in-4° and a in-folio Atlas, Paris 1828-29 – 7,800 euros), Rugendas’ classic work on Brazil, Voyage pittoresque dans le Brésil (in-folio, Paris 1835 – 19,500 euros) or Dupaix’ wonderful Antiquités méxicaines (1 vol. for the text, 1 vol. in-folio for the atlas, Paris 1844 – 22,500 euros). One of the most anticipated lots was Castelnau’s Expédition dans les parties centrales de l’Amérique... (13 vo. in-8°, in-4° and in-folio, in contemporary half binding – Paris 1861). Castelnau’s travel in South America is a testimony of an “expanding world” as Mr. Forgeot would say. The explorer went from Quito to La Paz and sailed the Amazon River. When he came back, four years later, he was very sick and almost blind. The 493 plates are said to be extraordinary and 272 of those illustrating this copy were contemporary hand coloured. “This monumental work is today still of great scientific value...” says Borba de Moraes (1), quoted in the catalogue. This unique set went for 44,000 euros, the highest bid of the auction.


There were a few books written in English that might be of interest to our readers, including the relation of Mendez Pinto, a Portuguese traveller who went to remote countries such as Ethiopia, China or Japan during the first half of the 17th century. Though said to be partially fictional, his relation, originally published in Portugal, was quickly translated into English, and printed in London in 1653. Our copy had been rebacked, had worn corners and some foxing. It still went for 3,000 euros.

The original English edition of Krascheninnikof’s The History of Kamtschatka... (Glocester, 1764) is the very first scientific account of Kamtschatka and it went for 2,300 euros. One of the most attractive lots of the sale was the diary of Admiral Lord Collingwood, written while commanding the British fleet in the Mediterranean. This unique historical piece, written from Collingwood’s own hand between Decembre 1807 and January 1810, came from the private library of the American banker André de Coppet, and was nicely bound in a contemporary vellum. The 26 leaves ended up on a detailed account of the Roses Battle off Costa Brava, that saw the French triumphing – a lovely memory, I must say. Collingwood died shortly after, in 1810, on board of the Ville de Paris, a magnificent French vessel captured by the English in the West Indies at the end of 18th century – an unhappy memory, I must confess. This valuable document did not meet the reserve price neither, to the despair of Mr. Forgeot: “this is such a valuable document! I was expecting much more than 8,000 euros for a hero of Trafalgar.” This item, who knows, might be relisted in the next part of this interesting auction sale – we’ll find out and let you know.


Books are like people, you can not explain why you suddenly fall in love with one of them. I had no special interest in the first lot of this auction until I held it in my hands. Historiale Description de l’Afrique by Léon l’Africain (Anvers, 1556), first published in 1550, is a wonderful book, the perfect hyphen between travel and knowledge. This gorgeous copy, bound in old vellum, had an incredible smell and was fitting the palm of my hand like a miracle. I was fascinated by the lettres printed on the paper, by the magnificent woodcuts in the text – some desert warriors, an intriguing camel... These drawings, still uncertain and yet at the forefront of their time, tell us so much about our human brothers who before us lived. They are like the echoes of a remote world, so familiar and yet so elusive. Unfortunately, a most fortunate book lover took this one home. Behind the velvet curtains of Drouot, more than anywhere else, miracles have a price – and this particular one was worth 3,900 euros before the commission, if the reserve was ever met!

(1)   Bora de Moraes (Rubens). Bibliographia Brasiliana. 2e édition. Rio de Janeiro, 1983. 2 volumes.

 Useful links :

- Pierre Bergé & Associés : www.pba-auctions.com

- Librairie Benoît Forgeot : www.forgeot.com  

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b><center>Gonnelli Auction House<br>Books, Autographs & Manuscripts<br>11th-12th of October 2022
    <b>Gonnelli Oct. 11th:</b> Alfieri Vittorio, <i>Vita [...] scritta da esso,</i> 1968. Starting Price: €900,00.
    <b>Gonnelli Oct. 11th:</b> Collection of 25 albumin photographs depicting Italian, French and Swiss places. Late 19th century.
    <b>Gonnelli Oct. 11th:</b> Brandolini D’Adda Brandolino, Duale. <i>Poesia [...] e incisioni di Sandro Martini,</i> 1976.
    <b>Gonnelli Oct. 11th:</b> Alighieri Dante, <i>La divina commedia di Dante</i> edizione illustrata da 30 fotografie tolte da disegni di Scaramuzza, 1879. Starting Price: €500,00.
    Gonnelli Oct. 12th: Cervantes Saavedra Miguel (de), <i>El Ingenioso Hidalgo Don Quixote de la Mancha.</i> Nueva edicion corregida por la Real Academia Española, 1780. Starting price: €12.000,00.
    <b>Gonnelli Oct. 11th:</b> Collodi Carlo, <i>Le avventure di Pinocchio. Storia di un burattino,</i> 1883. Starting price: €6.000,00.
    <b>Gonnelli Oct. 11th:</b> Wilde Oscar, <i>The Picture of Dorian Gray [...]</i> with original images & notes on the text by Jim Dine, 1968. Starting price: €1.500,00
    <b>Gonnelli Oct. 11th:</b> The smallest tarot cards in the world. 21st century.
  • <center><b>Doyle<br>Rare Books, Autographs & Maps<br>October 13, 2022</b>
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 109. Miguel de Cervantes. <i>The History of Don-Quichote. The first parte.</i> London: William Stansby for Edward Blount, 1620. $60,000 to $90,000.
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 43. Franklin Delano Roosevelt. <i>Addresses of Franklin D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill.</i> Washington: The White House, Christmastide, 1942. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 113. Charles Darwin. A collection of 26 titles including <i>On the Origin of Species.</i> $10,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 210. Philip Guston. Important correspondence between Philip Guston and Ralph and Martha Hyams. New York, 1967-76. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 26. John F. Kennedy and Marilyn Monroe. Signed guest book and original photos from the May 19, 1962 reception. $40,000 to $60,000.
    <center><b>Doyle<br>Rare Books, Autographs & Maps<br>October 13, 2022</b>
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 194. J.R.R. Tolkien. <i>The Lord of the Rings Trilogy.</i> London: George Allen and Unwin, 1954-1954-1955. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 164. Max Beerbohm. Autograph Manuscript for The Happy Hypocrite, circa 1896. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 158. Mark Twain. <i>The Writings.</i> Hartford: American Publishing Company, 1899-1907. The Autograph Edition. $7,000 to $10,000.
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 150. Lady Dilke. <i>French Painters of the XVIIIth Century.</i> London: George Bell, 1899. First edition. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Doyle, Rare Books, Autographs & Maps:</b> Lot 200. Ludwig Bemelmans. Original sketch of Madeline, ink and gouache. $4,000 to $6,000.
  • <b><center>Potter & Potter Auctions<br>Fine Books & Manuscripts<br>October 20, 2022</b></center>
    <b>Potter & Potter, Oct. 20:</b> JOYCE, James. <i>Ulysses.</i> London: John Lane the Bodley Head, 1937. PRESENTATION COPY OF THE FIRST ENGLISH EDITION PRINTED IN ENGLAND. $50,000 to $60,000.
    <b>Potter & Potter, Oct. 20:</b> [SHACKLETON, Ernest]. –– BROWNING, Robert. <i>Poetical Works of…</i> London: Smith and Elder, 1906. PRESENTED TO SHACKLETON AND THE OFFICERS OF THE NIMROD BY A MEMBER OF THE ROYAL GEOGRAPHICAL SOCIETY. $40,000 to $60,000.
    <b>Potter & Potter, Oct. 20:</b> AUDUBON, John James. <i>The Birds of America, from Drawings Made in the United States and Their Territories.</i> New York: George R. Lockwood, [1870]. $30,000 to $40,000.
    <b><center>Potter & Potter Auctions<br>Fine Books & Manuscripts<br>October 20, 2022</b></center>
    <b>Potter & Potter, Oct. 20:</b> ARISTOTLE. Opera, in Greek, parts one and two only: Organon and Natural Philosophy I. Edited by Aldus and others. Venice: Aldus Manutius, 1 November 1495–February 1498. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Potter & Potter, Oct. 20:</b> COOK, James, Capt. [Collected Voyages]. First and Second Voyages: London: W. Strahan; and T. Cadell, 1773, 1777; Third Voyage: London: H. Hughes for G. Nicol and T. Cadell, 1785. $14,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Potter & Potter, Oct. 20:</b> CLEMENS, Samuel Langhorne (“Mark Twain”). <i>The Writings of…</i> Hartford: American Publishing Co., 1899–1900. $12,000 to $16,000.
    <b><center>Potter & Potter Auctions<br>Fine Books & Manuscripts<br>October 20, 2022</b></center>
    <b>Potter & Potter, Oct. 20:</b> [KELMSCOTT PRESS]. SHAKESPEARE, William. <i>The Poems of…</i> Edited by Frederick S. Ellis. Hammersmith: William Morris for the Kelmscott Press, 1893. $12,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Potter & Potter, Oct. 20:</b> LONDON, Jack. <i>The Call of the Wild.</i> New York: The Macmillan Company, 1905. PRESENTATION COPY INSCRIBED BY LONDON. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Potter & Potter, Oct. 20:</b> CROWLEY, Aleister (1875–1947). <i>The Winged Beetle.</i> London: privately printed, 1910. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b><center>Potter & Potter Auctions<br>Fine Books & Manuscripts<br>October 20, 2022</b></center>
    <b>Potter & Potter, Oct. 20:</b> WILDE, Oscar (“C.3.3.”). <i>The Ballad of Reading Gaol.</i> London: Leonard Smithers, January 1898. $6,000 to $8,000.
    <b>Potter & Potter, Oct. 20:</b> DRYDEN, John. <i>Fables Ancient and Modern; translated into verse from Homer, Ovid, Boccace, & Chaucer: with original poems.</i> London: John Tonson, 1700. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Potter & Potter, Oct. 20:</b> [MAP]. LINSCHOTEN, Jan Huygen van. <i>Delineatio Orarum Maritimarum…</i> London: John Wolfe, 1598. $3,000 to $4,000.

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