Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - July - 2010 Issue

A New Miscellany from Kenneth Karmiole, Bookseller

Karmiole28

There are some very old books in Kenneth Karmiole's latest catalogue.


By Michael Stillman

Kenneth Karmiole, Bookseller, has printed a New Miscellany #28. A miscellany it certainly is, which makes it difficult to otherwise classify what may be found. There are quite a few very antiquarian books in Latin, 16th and 17th centuries, even an item of incunabula. However, there are a great many not quite so old books that cover just about anything, so you will need to see this catalogue to know what type of material it contains. Nevertheless, here are a few excerpts.

Item 26 offers some advice for those who find one wife to be insufficient: Reflections upon Polygamy, and the Encouragement Given to that Practice in the Scriptures of the Old Testament, by Phileleutherus Dubliniensis (actually, Patrick Delany). Delany was a respected Irish preacher who wrote on Old Testament issues. Contrary to the implication of the title, Delany does not come down in favor of the practice of multiple wives. He is against it, but not for moralistic reasons as might be expected of a churchman, but for practical reasons, believing it is harmful for children and families. Delany was a good friend and supporter of his fellow Irish church leader and author of Gulliver's Travels, Jonathan Swift. Priced at $500.

Item 78 is a copy of the massive Spanish history, The Generall Historie of Spaine... This title doesn't represent bad spelling, just the antiquity of this book. It is a first English edition of a history written in French by Louis Turquet de Mayerne. Mayerne covered Spanish history up to 1583, but translator Edward Grimstone then continued the book "up to these times" (1612). These would be particularly interesting times with regard to Spain from an English point of view as the defeat of the Spanish Armada, and the changing balance of power it signaled, came a few years after Grimstone took over. $4,500.

Item 113 is an interesting look at genetics, such as they were in 1839: Intermarriage: or, The Mode in Which, and the Causes Why, Beauty, Health and Intellect, Result from Certain Unions, and Deformity, Disease and Insanity, from Others... We will not be so rude as to inquire into the parentage of author Alexander Walker, but he evidently was not quite as insightful as, say, Charles Darwin, who was developing a different theory at this time. Walker concluded that the forehead, sense organs, and "nutritive" organs of the body were passed down from one parent, while the other parent passed along the back of the head, brain, and locomotive organs. Queen Victoria was offered as proof. She had her father's forehead but her mother's mouth, or at least so said Walker. Anyway, this book was offered as a guide to selecting a mate, though it never managed to replace "natural" selection as a means of making that choice. $150.

Item 82 might be called a "Catholic captivity," the equivalent of many Indian captivities, horrible, sensational, and completely false. It is the Awful Disclosures of Maria Monk, as Exhibited in a Narrative of Her Sufferings During a Residence of Five Years as a Novice, and Two Years as a Black Nun, in the Hotel Dieu Nunnery at Montreal. Maria Monk burst onto the scene in New York in 1836 (the year this tome was published), supported by some anti-Catholic ministers just as the first wave of Catholic immigrants was arriving. She told of her horrors in a Catholic convent in Montreal. Essentially her story was that the nuns had to travel through an underground tunnel to a seminary where they were forced to submit to the sexual demands of the priests. They were told that the priests were making great personal sacrifices, giving up marriage and family, so that the nuns could be saved, so this was the least the sisters could do in return. When babies were born of these illicit relationships, they were immediately baptized and then strangled. It made a sensational story, but when newspapermen and others investigated her claims, they found them wanting. Monk's description of the nunnery was totally inaccurate, and it turned out she had previously been committed by her mother to an asylum for insanity. Meanwhile, several anti-Catholic clergy battled for the profits from the book she had supposedly written. A dozen years later, long since discredited, Monk died in prison, arrested for theft and prostitution. $375.

Item 110 is Argonautica, a 1548 edition of this ancient classic by Gaius Valerius Flaccus. This is based on an ancient Greek tale, and is not the better-known version by Apollonius, the Greek librarian. It, too, is an epic poem, and not terribly original, bearing a resemblance to the earlier epic of the tale, but perhaps Flaccus' version was better suited for first century Rome where it was written. Flaccus' poem ends abruptly and early, leading to the belief that he probably died before his only surviving work was completed. Those unfamiliar with Argonautica may know it by its more recent film edition, Jason and the Argonauts. $675.

Kenneth Karmiole, Bookseller, Inc., may be reached at 310-451-4342 or Karmbooks@aol.com.

Rare Book Monthly

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    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 28:</b> Autograph album featuring signatures by prominent actors, politicians, musicians and authors, including Rudolph Valentino. £1,000 to £1,500
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 28:</b> An extremely rare working radio script for Crazy People No 29, the first series of <i>The Goon Show.</i> £600 to £800
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 28:</b> Manuscript prayer book, in German. 8vo, 1755 £800 to £1,200
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 28:</b> Italian Manuscript on Geometry, with diagrams, 18th century. £500 to £700
    <b>Chiswick Auctions: Ornithology, Zoology & Voyages. February 27, 2019</b>
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 27:</b> Thorburn (Archibald). Sparrowhawk, original watercolour & gouache, signed & dated lower right, 1917. £1,500 to £2,000
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 27:</b> Burton (Sir Richard Francis). <i>Personal Narrative of a Pilgrimage to El-Medinah and Meccah.</i> 3 vol., FIRST EDITION, 1855-56. £1,000 to £1,500
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 27:</b> [Mount (Richard) & Page (Thomas)]. <i>The English Pilot. Describing the Sea-Coasts…</i> 31 engraved maps, W. & J. Mount, T. Page, 1756 £4000 to £6000
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    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 27:</b> D’apres De Mannevillette (Jean-Baptiste Nicolas Denis). <i>Le Neptune Oriental.</i> Paris & Brest, [1775 – 1781]. £10,000 to £15,000
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 27:</b> Loring (Josiah). Terrestrial Globe Containing all the Late Discoveries and Geographical Improvements. Boston, Gilman Joslin, 1846, £800 to £1,200
    <b>Chiswick Auctions, Feb 27:</b> Shelley (G. E., Capt.). <i>A Monograph of the Nectariniidae, or Family of Sun-birds,</i> FIRST EDITION, by the Author, 1876-80. £4,000 to £6,000
  • <b>Bonhams: Treasures from the Eric C. Caren Collection: How History Unfolds on Paper, Part VII (Online). March 6-14, 2019</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Albert Einstein A remarkable letter on God in English, one of his most eloquent and quoted, 1 p, July 2, 1945. $100,000 to $150,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Benjamin Lincoln's commission as Major General in the Continental Army, February 19th, 1777. $60,000 to $90,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Broadside. A Poem Upon the Bloody Engagement That Was Fought on Bunker's-Hill. 1775. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Early, full printing of the Star-Spangled Banner in The Yankee, October 7, 1814. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Paul Revere. Engraving, “The Boston Massacre Perpetrated on March 5, 1770," in <i>Massachusett's Calendar 1772.</i> $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Bonhams: Treasures from the Eric C. Caren Collection: How History Unfolds on Paper, Part VII (Online). March 6-14, 2019</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Earliest known newspaper coverage of Babe Ruth, "a St Mary's schoolboy," Baltimore, April 4, 1914. $6,000 to $9,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Franklin, Benjamin. <i>The Independent Whig.</i> First Magazine Published in America, Philadelphia: Keimer, 1723-4. $15,000 to $20,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Smith, Joseph. <i>The Book of Mormon.</i> Palmyra: Printed by E.B. Grandin for the Author, 1830. First printing. $40,000 to $60,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Last Words of Joseph Smith. Autograph Letter Signed from a Mormon disciple, conveying a contemporary account of the Prophet's final words, Nauvoo, July 27, 1844. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> John Brown's Body. Autograph Letter Signed from the daughter of John Brown attempting to arrange the return of her father's body, North Elba, Essex Co, NY, November 29, 1859. $4,000 to $6,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar 6-14:</b> Powell Expedition. Autograph diary of Rhodes C. Allen kept during the Powell Expedition of 1868, June 29, 1868 - November 16, 1868. $20,000 to $40,000
  • <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
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  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, <i>El Ingenioso Hildalgo Don Quixote de la Mancha . . . Nueva Edición,</i> first Ibarra edition, Madrid, 1780. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> Illuminated Prayer Book in Latin and French, France, 1530-40s. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> Illuminated Book of Hours in Latin, France, mid-15th century. $15,000 to $20,000.
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    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> Frederick Ruysch, <i>Icon durae matris in concava [convexa] superficie visae,</i> with 2 mezzotints by Jan Ladmiral, first edition, Amsterdam, 1737. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen, <i>Eine Neue Art von Strahlen,</i> Würzburg, 1895. $3,000 to $5,000.
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    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, Mar 7:</b> Michel de Nostradamus, <i>The True Prophecies or Prognostications,</i> first complete edition in English, London, 1672. $2,500 to $3,500.
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