Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - July - 2010 Issue

Travel, Atlases and Maps from Peter Harrington

Harrington71

Travels from Peter Harrington.


By Michael Stillman

Peter Harrington has issued their 71st catalogue, Travel, Atlases and Maps. Offered are almost 200 items of mostly antiquarian looks at the world as seen through the eyes of Europeans when so much was still new or unknown. From Asia to America, the Near and Far East, Africa to Australia, North to South Pole, and all ports in between, you will likely find them described in the works in this catalogue. Not all of these travels had happy endings, and not all of these maps were terribly accurate, but you won't lack for excitement from any of the items here offered.

Item 10 is a thorough look at America 50 years after the Pilgrims landed: America; being the latest and most Accurate Description of the New World...by John Ogilby, published in 1671. Ogilby may have credited himself with writing this text, but it actually was stolen from Dutch author Arnoldus Montanus' De Nieuwe en Onbekended Weereld. Sabin listed Montanus as the author, describing the work as "an impudent plagarism," while Howes, noting "Ogilby unblushingly claims authorship and never mentions Montanus," states, "Piracy at this period was not confined to the high seas." Nevertheless, this is in effect a translation of a very good description of America at the time, from Canada to Brazil, and includes numerous portraits of great explorers and natives, along with maps and other illustrations of American lands. Priced at £50,000 (British pounds, or roughly $75,326 in U.S. Currency).

Item 57 is a Wild West story, Last of the Great Scouts. The Life Story of Col. William F. Cody "Buffalo Bill". Perhaps this is not an objective account since its title continues As Told by His Sister. This book may have been ghostwritten by Bert Leston Taylor, but Helen Cody Wetmore certainly provided the material, and her brother was a cooperative subject. It is an exciting tale about the life of the great showman, and his upbringing on the frontier, and notably, bloody Kansas where his abolitionist father died from injuries inflicted by pro-slavery border ruffians. This 1899 first edition is inscribed by "the sister of W.F. Cody "Buffalo Bill." £4,250 (US $6,401).

Item 116 consists of six publications relating to the Suez Canal, bound together. Most notably is Question du Suez Canal, by Ferdinand de Lesseps, published in 1860. De Lesseps had befriended the future ruler of Egypt years earlier as a diplomat, so he managed to get the concession to build the canal. Despite bickering between the French and British, he was able to raise the necessary funds and construct a canal many thought could not be built. It was opened in 1869, and de Lesseps later tried to build a canal in Panama, but this attempt was not successful. A couple of the items were signed by de Lesseps. £3,500 (US $5,272).

Item 15 is a first edition set of travels by a man whose name is familiar to us as a couple of cities and an island as well as an explorer, George Vancouver. Vancouver had already participated in Cook's second and third voyages when he was chosen to lead his own expedition to the northwest coast of America. Like so many before and after, part of his mission was to attempt to find a northwest passage, along with other explorations. However, his presence was also intended to assert British claims to this territory, one of the last areas on Earth still mostly unexplored at this late date (1790s). Despite his great achievements, and his very well-run operation, Vancouver did not receive the recognition of many other explorers due to some disruptive but well-connected crewmen. His three-volume plus an atlas account, published in 1798 (after his death), is entitled A Voyage of Discovery to the North Pacific Ocean, and Round the World... €47,500 (US $58,748).

George Anson's 'round the world voyage was nowhere near as professionally run or as successful as that of Vancouver, and yet Anson received far more recognition and personal rewards than did the latter. Item 18 is Anson's A Voyage Round the World in the Years MDCCXL...IV... published in 1748. Anson was sent to harass Spanish shipping around South America in the infamous War of Jenkins' Ear. He lost all but one of his ships, most of his crew died from disease and accidents, and many of those who did survive went through harrowing tales of finding their way to civilization in South America, which, of course, was controlled by their Spanish enemy. Despite repeated failures in his mission, Anson's one ship managed to make it around the Horn and headed back home going east to west. Miraculously, he managed to find and capture a Spanish ship laden with treasure off the coast of the Philippines, which enabled Anson to return home a hero and wealthy man despite losing most of his ships and men. €3,850 (US $4,761).

Peter Harrington Antiquarian Bookseller may be reached at +44 (0)20 7591 0220 or mail@peterharringtonbooks.co.uk. Their website is www.peterharringtonbooks.com.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <center><b>The Collectors’ Sale<br>March 3, 2021</b>
    <b>Fonsie Mealy, Mar. 3:</b> Verlag, Luzern, Publishers: <i>The Book of Kells,</i> the most precious illuminated manuscript of the early Middle Ages, now reproduced, the FIRST AND ONLY COMPLETE FINE ART FACSIMILE EDITION. €5,000 to €6,000.
    <b>Fonsie Mealy, Mar. 3:</b> Rowling (J.K.) <i>Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone,</i> 8vo, L. (Bloomsbury) 1997, First Deluxe Edn., Signed by the Author on title page. €4,000 to €5,000.
    <b>Fonsie Mealy, Mar. 3:</b> Gilbert (John T.) Account of Facsimiles of National Manuscripts of Ireland, from the earliest extant specimens to A.D. 719. €2,000 to €3,000.
    <center><b>The Collectors’ Sale<br>March 3, 2021</b>
    <b>Fonsie Mealy, Mar. 3:</b> <i>The Georgian Society Records of Eighteenth-Century Domestic Architecture in Dublin [-Ireland],</i> 5 vols. lg. 4to D. 1909 - 1913. Limited Editions. €1,500 to €2,000.
    <b>Fonsie Mealy, Mar. 3:</b> Yeats (W.B.) <i>The Poems of W.B. Yeats,</i> 2 vols., roy 8vo, L. (MacMillan & Co.) 1949, Limited Edn., No. 185 (of 375 copies). Signed. €1,500 to €2,000.
    <b>Fonsie Mealy, Mar. 3:</b> Crone (John S.)ed. <i>The Irish Book Lover, A Monthly Review of Irish Literature and Bibliography.</i> Vol. I No 1 August 1909 - Vol. XXXII No. 6, September 1957. €1,250 to €2,000.
    <center><b>The Collectors’ Sale<br>March 3, 2021</b>
    <b>Fonsie Mealy, Mar. 3:</b> Yeats (John Butler) <i>An original self-portrait Sketch,</i> Signed and dated April 1919, N[ew] York. €1,200 to €1,500.
    <b>Fonsie Mealy, Mar. 3:</b> Photograph Album. Entitled ''A Souvenir of the Visit to Jeypore Samasthanam of His Excellency the Right Hon'ble Viscount Goschen of Hawkhurst… 14th December 1927''. €1,000 to €1,500.
    <b>Fonsie Mealy, Mar. 3:</b> Pistolesi (Erasmo) <i>Il Vaticano,</i> 8vols. large atlas, folio Rome (Tipografia della Societa..) 1829. €500 to €600.
    <center><b>The Collectors’ Sale<br>March 3, 2021</b>
    <b>Fonsie Mealy, Mar. 3:</b> Chagall (Marc)illus., Legmarie (Jean) comp., <i>The Jerusalem Windows,</i> folio N.Y. (George Braziller) 1962. €400 to €500.
    <b>Fonsie Mealy, Mar. 3:</b> Bullitt (Thos. W.) <i>My Life at Oxmoor,</i> Life on a Farm in Kentucky before the War. Roy 8vo Louisville, Kentucky, 1911. Privately Printed No. 86 of 100 Copies Only. €300 to €400.
    <b>Fonsie Mealy, Mar. 3:</b> Popish Plot: Oates (Titus) <i>The Popes Whore House or The Merchandise of The Whore of Rome,</i> folio L. 1679. First Edn. €100 to €150.
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Feb 25:</b> Frederick Douglass, ALS recruiting help for his paper after schism with Garrison, Rochester, 1851. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Feb 25:</b> James Dean, photograph by Sanford H. Roth, signed & inscribed by Dean. $7,000 to $10,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Feb 25:</b> Richard Wagner, ALS requesting confirmation that the Grand Duke received his letter, 1863. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Feb 25:</b> Benjamin Rush, ALS, doctor’s note for a Revolutionary soldier, 1780. $2,500 to $3,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Feb 25:</b> Lord Byron, ALS to Cambridge classmate, “your friendship is of more account to me than all these absurd vanities,” c. 1812. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Feb 25:</b> Ernest Hemingway, <i>Three Stories & Ten Poems,</i> first edition of the author’s first book, Paris, 1923. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Feb 25:</b> Ralph Ellison, <i>Invisible Man,</i> first English edition of the author’s first novel, signed, London, 1953. $1,800 to $2,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Feb 25:</b> Margery Lawrence, <i>The Madonna of Seven Moons,</i> first edition in unrestored dust jacket, Indianapolis, 1933. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Feb 25:</b> Joseph Albers, <i>Interaction of Color,</i> 80 color screenprints, Yale University Press, New Haven & London, 1963. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Feb 25:</b> Albert Einstein, autograph manuscript, unsigned, likely a draft discarded while working toward a unified field theory. $10,000 to $20,000.

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