• <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 28, 2019</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Greco (Gioachino). <i>Primo modo del gioco de Partito…</i> Manuscript, France, 1624 or 1625. A collection of partiti, or 'chess problems' by one of the most important figures in the history of chess. £20,000 to £30,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Herodotus. <i>Historiae,</i> translated into Latin by Lorenzo Valla and edited by Antonio Mancinelli. Venice, 1494. £15,000 to £20,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Darwin (Charles). Autograph Letter signed to his cousin Reginald Darwin, Down, Beckenham, Kent, 27th March 1879. £12,000 to £18,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 28, 2019</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Nicolay (Nicolas de). <i>The Navigations, peregrinations and voyages, made into Turkie,</i> first edition in English, Imprinted at London by Thomas Dawson, 1585. £10,000 to £15,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Saint-Exupéry (Antoine de). <i>The Little Prince,</i> number 66 of 525 copies signed by the author, 1943. £8,000 to £12,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Catlin (George, 1796-1872). Tuch-ee, A Celebrated War Chief of the Cherokees, watercolour, [circa 1834]. £6,000 to £8,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 28, 2019</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Genetics.- A collection of c.300 pamphlets on genetics comprising many of the major contributions from the first half of the 20th century. £5,000 to £7,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar 28:</b> India.- Rajasthan.- Kota School (probably late 18th c.). Elephant in a landscape with chains around his feet, brush and black ink with opaque pigments. £5,000 to £7,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Commelin (Caspar). <i>Horti medici Amstelaedamensis plantae rariores et exoticae,</i> first edition, 48 finely hand-coloured engraved plates, Leiden, F.Haringh, 1706. £4,000 to £6,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 28, 2019</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Plague-water and cookery & medical recipes.- Jackson (Mrs Sarah). Medical and cookery recipes, manuscript in several hands, title and 134pp., 1688-1755. £4,000 to £6,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Vernet (<i>After</i> Joseph, 1714-1789). <i>[Vues des ports de France],</i> sixteen plates (of 18), etchings and engravings by Charles Nicolas Cochin fils and Jacques Philippe Le Bas, [c.1760-1780]. £4,000 to £6,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Detmold (Edward Julius, 1883-1957). Parrots and Butterflies, watercolour. £2,500 to £3,500.
  • <b>Koller Auctions: Books & Autographs. March 26, 2019</b>
    <b>Koller Auctions, Mar 26:</b> Jacques Gamelin. <i>Nouveau recueil d'osteologie et de myologie, dessine d'apres nature...</i> 2 parts in 1 vol., large folio, 82 copper plates. CHF 12,000 to 18,000
    <b>Koller Auctions, Mar 26:</b> Melchior Pfintzing. <i>Die geverlicheiten und einsteils geschichten des loblichen streytparen...</i> 118 woodcut engravings, first edition. CHF 30,000 to 50,000
    <b>Koller Auctions, Mar 26:</b> Book of hours. Handwritten Latin text on vellum. With 17 large miniatures, Flanders, c.1460. CHF 70,000 to 90,000
    <b>Koller Auctions, Mar 26:</b> Maria Sibylla Merian. <i> Dissertatio de generatione et metamorphosibus insectorum Surinamensium,</i> 72 copper plates, Den Haag, 1726. CHF 60,000 to 90,000
  • <b>Bonhams, Mar 12:</b> Walt Whitman. <i>Leaves of Grass.</i> First edition, first issue, SIGNED in block letters by Whitman. 1855. $200,000 to $300,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 12:</b> Isaac Newton's copy of John Greave's <i>Pyramidographia,</i> London, 1646. $50,000 to $70,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 12:</b> Colonel John Mosby. Robert E. Lee's autograph letter to Samuel Cooper reporting on Mosby's exploits, with Cooper's autograph note ordering his appointment to Major.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 12:</b> Gyula Halasz Brassai. Large archive of autograph and typed letters, over 260, to his family including his wife Gilberte, 1947-1978. $40,000 to $60,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 12:</b> Archive of drawings and letters from Harper Lee to Charles Carruth, including an inscribed first edition of <i>To Kill a Mockingbird.</i> $20,000 to $30,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 11:</b> VESALIUS, ANDREAS. 1514-1564. <i>De humani corporis fabrica libri septem.</i> Basel: Johannes Oporinus, June 1543. $300,000 to $500,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 11:</b> HARVEY, WILLIAM. 1578-1657. <i>De motu cordis & sanguinis in animalibus Anatomica Exercitatio.</i> Leiden: Joannis Maire, 1639. $25,000 to $35,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 11:</b> BERENGARIO DA CARPI, GIACOMO. 1460-1530. <i>Isagogae breves perlucide ac uberrimae in Anatomiam humani corporis.</i> Bologna: Benedictus Hectoris, 15 July 1523. $15,000 to $25,000
    <b>Bonhams NY, Mar 11:</b> FRANKLIN, BENJAMIN. 1706-1790. <i>Experiments and Observations on Electricity, made at Philadelphia in America…</i> London, 1769. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams NY, Mar 11:</b> BENIVIENI, ANTONIO. 1443-1502. <i>De abditis nonnullis ac mirandis morborum et sanationum causis.</i>Florence: Filippo Giunta, 1507. $8,000 to $12,000
  • <b>Chiswick Auctions: Books & Illustrated Art including Cartoons. March 28, 2019</b>
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Silver Binding.- [Torah], German 13 Loth silver binding, hinged clasp, 12mo, Sulzbach, 1805. £2,500 to £3,500.
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Picasso (Pablo). Minotaure vaincu, plate 89 from La Suite Vollard, etching, dated 29 May 1933, pencil, plate 190 x 265 mm, Paris, A. Vollard, 1939. £5,000 to £6,000.
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Dali (Salvador) & Alighieri (Dante). <i>La Divina Commedia,</i> 6 vols, NUMBER 478 of 2,900 copies, 100 numbered colour lithograph plates by Salvador Dalì, folio, Verona, 1963-1964. £3,000 to £4,000.
    <b>Chiswick Auctions: Books & Illustrated Art including Cartoons. March 28, 2019</b>
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Miniature Sepher Torah Nevi'im U'Kethuvim, prepared by Menachem M. Scholz, original cloth, housed within original gilt tooled metal case, with magnifying glass inset, 33x25 mm, Warsaw, c. 1880. £1,200 to £1,800.
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Scarfe (Gerald). ‘Men of Snow’ [Tony Blair, William Hague & 'Robin' Cook], original ink, watercolour & gouache drawing, signed, 600 x 435 mm, n.d. with 2 others (3). £800 to £1,200
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Francklyn (Gilbert), Paine (Thomas). <i>Rights of Man…</i>, FIRST EDITION [and] <i>Rights of Man. Part the Second…,</i> Printed for J. S. Jordan, 1791-92, [and 1 other]. £700 to £1,000
    <b>Chiswick Auctions: Books & Illustrated Art including Cartoons. March 28, 2019</b>
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Chagall (Marc). Le Jeu des Acrobates (Acrobats at Play), HORS COMMERCE PROOF, lithograph, from The Lithographs of Chagall, 320 x 240 mm, André Sauret, 1963. £1,800 to £2,200
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Mar 28:</b> [Harris (John)]. <i>The History of The Old Woman who had Three Sons Jerry, James, and John…,</i> 12mo, J. Harris, 1815. £200 to £300
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Royal Binding.- Staël-Holstein (Germaine de). <i>De la littèrature considerée dans ses rapports avec les institutions sociales…,</i> 2 vols, second edition, Crapelet, Paris, [1801]. £400 to £600
    <b>Chiswick Auctions: Books & Illustrated Art including Cartoons. March 28, 2019</b>
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Ancient History.- La Baune (Jacques de). <i> Panegyrici Veteres,</i> Paris, 1676. [with] Wesseling (Petrus, ed.). <i> Vetera Romanorum itineraria…</i> £800 to £1,200
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Edward (Gibbon). <i> History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire…</i> Multiple editions and languages [English and French]. £300 to £400
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Mar 28:</b> Curtis (William). <i> Flora Londinensis,</i> FIRST EDITION, 2 vols in 3. 119 hand-coloured plates of 454. £500 to £700

Rare Book Monthly

Articles - January - 2019 Issue

Voyage a la Mer du Sud: No Hollywood Spin-Off

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A voyage on the good ship Wager.

Although sub-titled “a follow-up to Anson’s voyage”, and sometimes bound with the latter, Voyage A la Mer du Sud1 (Duplain Brothers—Lyon, 1756) is actually an independent publication, the spin-off of one of the deadliest sea expeditions ever. Anson left England in 1740 with 1,854 men, and returned with only 188 of them, four years later. A few more made it back on their own, two years later. This book tells their story.

 

Nothing could be more exciting than the fate of an English fleet boldly sailing the wide ocean in order to sack the Spanish settlements on the Western coast of Peru and Mexico,” declare Benoît and Pierre Duplain, talking about Anson’s voyage. As a matter of fact, first published in French in 1749 (Arkstee and Merkus)—one year after the English first edition (London)—, it was very successful; insomuch that it was twice illegally reprinted in France before the second official edition of 1751 saw the light. In the second preface, the publishers, Arkstee and Merkus, castigate those “two ugly counterfeit editions of Paris and Genève”, praising their own for its “copper plates engraved by the best Masters”, its “quality paper” and its “world map drawn by Bellin, showing the path taken by the expedition.” As a matter of fact, this is the best French edition of Anson’s voyage.

 

Duplains’ Voyage à la Mer du Sud tells the misfortunes of The Wager, one of Anson’s fleet. Just as the expedition came out of Le Maire Strait, the ships were hit by a terrible tempest. “The Wager and her 150 men suffered the most,” the preface of our book states, “losing her masts, being isolated from the rest of the fleet, and unfortunately running aground on a small island on the Western coast of Patagonia.” The rest is of nothing but mutiny, pains and violent deaths—a reader’s delight, indeed. Back to England, several survivors published the account of what they had gone through. The French translator, Abbé Rivers2, compiled four of these memoirs: Bulkeley and Cummins’ (London, 1743), Alexander Campbell’s (Dublin, 1747), Isaac Morris’ (Dublin, 1752) and an anonymous one—actually John Young’s (London, 1751)3. “Their accounts, naive and simple, carry the seal of truth,” states Abbé Rivers. They were, he adds, genuine, and recognized as such in England, “although they didn’t reach their goal, which was to justify their authors from rebelling against the authority of Captain Cheap.”

 

There is no engraving in Duplains’ book, except an allegoric vignette on page 1, taken from Histoire Navale d’Angleterre (Duplain, 1751). It comes as follows: half-title page, bicoloured title page, xvi pages (forewords), 185 pages, xiv pages (contents). The text itself was brilliantly put together. Abbé Rivers writes: “The original memoirs were written without order or correction—no way could we have published them in their neglected and gross form. Their authors, good sailors but no men of letters, used a raw and rambling style(...). Their adventures are drowned in useless discourses, weird and dubious constructions, and vulgar ideas and commonplaces.” He then discloses the structure of his work: “I’ve divided the narratives into two parts. The first one deals with the shipwreck of the Wager, the stay of the crew on the island, and the voyage of those who went to Brazil through the Strait, until they eventually reached England. The second one focuses on the eight men, who were left on the Eastern coast of Patagonia—we follow them through their voyage to Buenos-Aires where they meet up with Sir Campbell, who tells them about his own voyage with Captain Cheap, that led them to Chile—then, they all embark on a Spanish vessel heading to England.” The French publisher expunged all details about latitudes, wind directions, etc. This book was definitely conceived as a tale of adventures—and sure it is!

 

The misfortune of the Wager is mentioned in Anson’s voyage, but “only in a few words,” deplores Abbé Rivers. The aforementioned tempest lasted for three months, exhausting the men and isolating the Wager from the rest of the fleet. When she then came perilously close to the shore, the crew warned Captain Cheap, but he didn’t listen, and “on the 14th, at about 4 A.M, the stern of our ship hurt a rock under the surface.” This wreck, an “unforgivable fault”, is here blamed on Mr Cheap. The crew partly left the ship to seek refuge on the nearby shore—but on board, the sailors remained deaf to orders, and “pierced the barrels of wine and liquor, and drank until they were drunk; then taking some swords and pistols, they broke the chests, cracked the safe, looted the money and put on the best clothes they could find.” Several fell from the deck, and drowned. Others even fired a gun at the Captain’s hut ashore, probably thinking he had abandoned them. A few days later, following a quarrel, Captain Cheap fired his pistol at one Cozens without warning—he died a few days later. “This shotgun, discharged at the head of a man without further ceremony, is but a dark assassination,” reads our text.

 

54 men had perished during the wreck, only 100 were left on this unfriendly island covered with snow, and the few Natives who lived nearby were of little help. “Food was getting scarce, we had become starving wolves running up and down for a bone. (...) At times, it was so cold we couldn’t even get out of our shelters. Staying on a sad shore, in a savage and ungrateful country, far away from home, divided by inner feuds, fearing forthcoming pains, we were living a desperate life.” Five months later, a troop of 81 mutineers left the island with the two small boats. They intended to cross the Strait of Magellan, and to reach Brazil—it took them more than a month of a tedious navigation, and only 43 of them survived. They came back to England on January 1, 1743. “The Admiralty was upset; we presented our memoirs, which the Officers kindly read; but they declared that we wouldn’t be paid, and should never serve His Majesty again.” This part is taken from the narratives of John Young, Bulkeley and Cummins. At one point, they are forced to leave eight men on the eastern shore of Patagonia, 100 miles away from Buenos Aires—and their tribulations, told by Isaac Morris, starts the second Part of our book.

 

The eight survivors ate common seals and armadillos for three months, surrounded by fierce tigers. Some unknown assailants slaughtered four of them before they were captured by a group of Natives. “At their settlement, we were bought and sold countless times. A pair of spurs, a copper basin, a handful of ostriches’ feathers, that kind of stuff—this is what we were worth.” They lived twelve months among them: “The Patagonians, at least those who met, are tall and well-built; they are usually 5 to 6 feet tall.” At the time, some accounts, following Pigaffeta’s4, still described the Patagonians as giants—an assertion reiterated by Lord Byron in the account of his circumnavigation of 1764-65. The account of these survivors, who lived among the Patagonians, clearly contradicts them.

 

Three of them eventually made it to Buenos Aires, where they embarked on a Spanish ship. They served on board almost as slaves for one more year before meeting Mr Campbell in Monte Video. Campbell then told them about his own journey alongside Captain Cheap: after a few months spent on the island, they left on board of two small boats to round Cape Horn, but were soon forced to turn back. In 1742, starving to death, they tried again. During this journey, six sailors sailed away with the boat, leaving Captain Cheap behind. “We never saw them again,” writes Campbell. “There were five of us, now; we had no weapon, no clothes, no resources, and we were left in the middle of a desert of rocks and wood. This was the most terrible time of our lives.” A few months later, some Natives took them to the island of Chiloe, where they were ill treated by the Spaniards—let’s bear in mind that Anson’s expedition aimed at ruining their settlements. After reaching Chile, they still had to cross the dreadful Andes Mountains to reach Buenos Aires before embarking for England.

 

Capturing a rich Spanish galleon on his way back, Lord Anson turned his disastrous journey into a success—a sort of commercial redemption. But the authors of the memoirs here compiled miraculously survived hunger, fierce tigers, want, and human wickedness only to be called traitors in their homeland. “After six years of pathetic accidents that left us without money, resources or protection, we hoped to be rewarded for our pains but we were treated as rebels.” Captain Cheap, although unanimously blamed for several misdeeds, was promoted to the rank of post captain. He died in 1752. This Voyage à la Mer du sud is an Odyssey with no heroes, no glory, and no happy ending—definitely not a Hollywood spin-off.

 

 

T. Ehrengardt

1The National Library of Australia reads: Also titled An affecting narrative of the unfortunate of H.M. Ship Wager.

2He’s not credited in the book and his translation was, according to Barbier, reworked by Abbé Laugier (1713-1769).

3A lot of narratives came out in England at the time. In The Gentleman’s Magazine For the Year MDCCLXXX. (London, 1781), one T. Row already lists nine of them: Bulkeley and Cummins’, John Phillips’, Pascoe Thomas’, Benjamin Robins’ (credited to Richard Walter), John Young’s (published anonymously), Alexander Campbell’s, Isaac Morris’, John (now Admiral) Byron’s, and an anonymous one, of which T. Row writes: “I never could find out who this officer was."

4He wrote the account of Magellan’s circumnavigation.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Arenberg Auctions: Rare Books, Manuscripts, Maps, and Works on Paper. March 29 & 30, 2019</b>
    <b>Arenberg Auctions, Mar 29 & 30:</b> QUAST, Pieter Jansz. - [A Quack doctor on a market square.] €3.500 to €4.500
    <b>Arenberg Auctions, Mar 29 & 30:</b><br>"Il Callotto resuscitato. Oder Ne¸ eingerichtes Zwerchen Cabinet." €6.000 to €7.000
    <b>Arenberg Auctions, Mar 29 & 30:</b> MELLISS, Mrs. John Charles - 135 compositions of which 66 used to illustrate John Melliss' work on Saint Helena. €9.000 to €10.000
    <b>Arenberg Auctions: Rare Books, Manuscripts, Maps, and Works on Paper. March 29 & 30, 2019</b>
    <b>Arenberg Auctions, Mar 29 & 30:</b> LUCA, Ghérasim. - <i>Apostroph' apocalypse. Eaux-fortes de Wifredo Lam.</i> €3.000 to €4.000
    <b>Arenberg Auctions, Mar 29 & 30:</b> REDOUTÉ, Pierre-Joseph - <i>Les Roses. Décrites par C.A. Thory.</i> €3.000 to €4.000
    <b>Arenberg Auctions, Mar 29 & 30:</b> CORONELLI, Vincenzo - A magnificent pair of globes, terrestrial and celestial. €175.000 to €250.000
    <b>Arenberg Auctions: Rare Books, Manuscripts, Maps, and Works on Paper. March 29 & 30, 2019</b>
    <b>Arenberg Auctions, Mar 29 & 30:</b> BLAEU, Joan - <i>Le Grand Atlas, ou Cosmographie Blaviaene, en laquelle est exactement descritte la Terre, la Mer, et le Ciel.</i> €170.000 to €250.000
    <b>Arenberg Auctions, Mar 29 & 30:</b> GOULD, John - A century of birds from the Himalaya mountains. €10.000 to €12.000
    <b>Arenberg Auctions, Mar 29 & 30:</b> LEVAILLANT, François - Histoire naturelle des perroquets. €50.000 to €70.000
    <b>Arenberg Auctions: Rare Books, Manuscripts, Maps, and Works on Paper. March 29 & 30, 2019</b>
    <b>Arenberg Auctions, Mar 29 & 30:</b> MAXIMILIAN III JOSEPH - Patent of nobility. €800 to €1.000
    <b>Arenberg Auctions, Mar 29 & 30:</b> Manuale parochiale sacerdotum. €800 to €1.200
    <b>Arenberg Auctions, Mar 29 & 30:</b> LONGUS - Les amours pastorales de Daphnis et Chloé. €1.250 to €1.500
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 28:</b> <i>The Negro Travelers' Green Book,</i> edited by Victor H. Green, New York, 1958. $2,500 to $3,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 28:</b> Phillis Wheatley, <i>Poems on Various Subjects, Religious & Moral,</i> London, 1773. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 28:</b> David Ruggles, <i>The Mirror of Liberty,</i> first issue of the first magazine edited by an African American, New York, 1838. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 28:</b> Lorraine Hansberry, <i>A Raisin in the Sun,</i> draft typescript, inscribed by the playwright, circa 1958. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 28:</b> Pair of letterpress broadsides for Ira Aldridge’s historic first 2 performances at London’s Theatre Royal, 1833. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 28:</b> Archive of letters to John Augustine Washington III at Mount Vernon, many of which discuss the lives of enslaved persons, 1837-61. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 28:</b> Important archive of letters and photographs of Charles White and his spouse, Frances B. White, 1956-60. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 28:</b> Papers of educator Sister Makinya Sibeko-Kouate, one of the leading popularizers of Kwanzaa, 1940-1975. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 28:</b> Stock certificate of the Negro Factories Corporation, signed by Marcus Garvey, 1920. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 28:</b> Benjamin Banneker, <i>Bannaker’s Maryland . . . Almanack and Ephemeris, for the Year of our Lord 1796,</i> Baltimore, 1795. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 28:</b> Frederick Douglass, previously unknown carte-de-visite by Samuel M. Fassett, Washington DC, 1878. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 28:</b> <i>First Annual Report of the New York Committee of Vigilance,</i> New York, 1837. $3,000 to $4,000.

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