Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - June - 2011 Issue

A Spring Miscellany from Michael Thompson Books

Thompson97

Michael Thompson's Spring Miscellany.

Michael Thompson Books has published a Spring Miscellany. Thompson's miscellanies are appropriately named, as there is a wide range of material to be found. What we find here in particular are antiquarian works, primarily of European origin, and fine press books, generally from the past century. It's not quite that simple as there can be just about anything here, but at least this highlights much of the material to be found. Offered is a collection of 100 books, most of them recent acquisitions. Here are a few.

 

Item 33 is the first script from a theatrical performance that was once, in its own way, more popular than Shakespeare in old England. It is Punch and Judy, a free-form puppet theater that played on the streets of London for centuries. Punch and Judy made its first appearance in England in 1662, but it was not until 1828 that John Payne Collier first put a dialogue to print. The play never had a set group of lines. The puppeteer would follow a loose script, often at least partly adlibbed, from behind a curtain. It involved Punch and his wife, Judy, their baby, and often a host of other characters. It was puppet slapstick, as the two would get into battles, the result of Punch's foolish behavior. It should be noted that author Collier would later be accused by many of fabricating certain Shakespeare material, though there is no sign he made up the Punch and Judy dialogue. The book was illustrated by George Cruikshank, perhaps the most notable illustrator and caricaturist of his era. It is bound with a scarce 1840s pamphlet entitled Park's Amusing History of Punch & Judy. Offered is a second edition of the main book, published the same year as the first. Priced at $750.

 

Item 63 is Dris Martini Lutheri colloquia mensalia; or, Dr. Martin Luther's Divine Discourses at his Table. This is a first English edition (1652) of what is better known as Martin Luther's Table Talk. It contains quotes, or at least paraphrases, of comments made by Luther around the table, as compiled by Dr. Antonius Lauterbach. The latter has been described as Luther's Boswell, an admirer who tried to preserve all of significance Luther said, though Luther did not want his unconsidered comments so published. It provides great insight into Luther, both as theologian and man. As man, Luther had his share of warts, and this book can at times be coarse, merciless, and bigoted. Luther had his opinions of Catholics, Jews, and Turks, that were not, to say the least, always kind. Still, Luther was a product of his times, and not one to be terribly concerned about political correctness. $1,500.

 

Item 54 is the second title printed by the pioneering private press of William Morris - Kelmscott Press. The title is Poems by the Way, which reflects the multi-talents of Morris. Along with being a fine press printer in the last years of his life, he was a novelist, poet, artist, designer, and political socialist. This personal collection was published in a run of 300 copies at Kelmscott in 1891. $2,500.

 

Item 42 is The History of the Life of the Duke of Espernon, the great favourite of France, by Guillaume Girard. Certainly Jean Louis de Nogaret de La Valette, who lived from 1554 to 1648, was a great favorite of the leaders of France, especially King Henry III. Henry showered La Valette with a series of titles, including this dukedom created specifically on his behalf. The Duke was a contemporary of Henry who worked his way into the King's inner circle. Though Henry died more than a half a century before Espernon, the Duke also managed to ingratiate himself to the following two kings, even though he was suspected of participating in the assassination of one. He would remain an important person in France until finally disgraced in his later years and exiled to a castle in the countryside. This book was "Englished," or as we more commonly say, translated, in 1670 by Charles Cotton, better known as Izaak Walton's fishing buddy. $650.

 

On June 6, 1944, known to history as "D-Day," President Franklin Roosevelt delivered a message via radio to the American public. The President issued a prayer, asking, "With thy blessing, we shall prevail over the unholy forces of our enemy. Help us to conquer the apostles of greed and racial arrogance.  Lead us to the saving of our country…" Thankfully, his prayer was answered. For Christmas that year, FDR printed up a broadside of his D-Day Prayer. Only 50 copies were printed, and they were given to a few of his closest friends at a White House ceremony. Item 76 is one of those. $17,500.

 

Michael Thompson Books may be reached at 323-658-1901 or mrtbksla@pacbell.net.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries, May 12:</b> <i>Westvaco–Inspirations for Printers,</i> 3 volumes, 1938-61. $200 to $300.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, May 12:</b> Proef van Letteren, <i>Welk gegooten worden in de Nieuwe Haerlemsche Lettergietery,</i> 1768. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, May 12:</b> Paul Klee, <i>Bauhaus Ausstellung Juli – Sept.,</i> Weimar, 1923. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, May 12:</b> Michel Seuphor & Jozef Peeters, <i>Het Overzicht Nos.</i> 22-23-24, Antwerp, 1922. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, May 12:</b> Wolfrum & Co., <i>Modern Graphik, Serie I…,</i> complete portfolio, 1909. $1,200 to $1,800.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries, May 12:</b> <i>Gravure et Fonderie deC. Derriey: Specimen-Album,</i> Paris, 1862. $5,000 to $7,500.
  • <b><center>Sotheby’s<br>Science: Books and Manuscripts<br>15-25 May 2021</b>
    <b>Sotheby’s, 15-25 May:</b> Mary Anning. Autograph letter signed, to William Buckland, 24 November 1834. £50,000 to £70,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, 15-25 May:</b> Bolyai. <i>Scientiam spatii absolute veram exhibens,</i> Maros Vásárhelyi, 1832-1833, 2 volumes, half calf. £50,000 to £70,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, 15-25 May:</b> Vesalius.<br><i>De humani corporis fabrica,</i> Basel, 1555, modern crushed burgundy morocco. £15,000 to £20,000.
    <b><center>Sotheby’s<br>Science: Books and Manuscripts<br>15-25 May 2021</b>
    <b>Sotheby’s, 15-25 May:</b> Copernicus.<br><i>De revolutionibus orbium coelestium,</i> Nuremberg, 1543, later boards, Rostock duplicate. £70,000 to £100,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, 15-25 May:</b> Payan-Dumoulin. Profusely illustrated manuscript of fossils, France, c.1875-1979. £15,000 to £20,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, 15-25 May:</b> Albert Einstein. Autograph letter signed, to his son Albert, 4 November [1915]. £10,000 to £15,000.
  • <center><b>Forum Auctions<br>Images of Angling:<br>The David Beazley Collection<br>of Angling Prints<br>Online Sale<br>20th May 2021</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, May 20:</b> Alken (Henry), after. Salmon Fishing; Fishing in a Punt; Pike Fishing, three works, 1820. £600 to £800.
    <b>Forum Auctions, May 20:</b> Early Images of Angling.- Hollar (Wenceslaus) Angling; River Fishing; and Salmon Fishing, after Francis Barlow, 3 engravings, [c. 1671]. £500 to £700.
    <b>Forum Auctions, May 20:</b> Rolfe (Henry Leonidas). <i>Studies of Fresh Water Fish,</i> 1851. £500 to £700.
    <center><b>Forum Auctions<br>Images of Angling:<br>The David Beazley Collection<br>of Angling Prints<br>Online Sale<br>20th May 2021</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, May 20:</b> Morland (George), After. A Party Angling; The Anglers' Repast, a pair, mezzotints, 1789. £400 to £600.
    <b>Forum Auctions, May 20:</b> Pollard (James), After. Bottom Fishing; Anglers Packing Up, etchings with aquatint, 1831. £400 to £600.
    <b>Forum Auctions, May 20:</b> Angling's Age of Romance.- Sayer (Robert, publisher) & J. Bennett. The Angelic Angler, mezzotint, 1781; and another. £300 to £400.
    <center><b>Forum Auctions<br>Images of Angling:<br>The David Beazley Collection<br>of Angling Prints<br>Online Sale<br>20th May 2021</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, May 20:</b> Fishing Satire.- London.- Roberts (Piercy). Patience at Paddington or angling in the Junction Canal, etching after Woodward, 1807; together with Woodward's 'Angling at Sadler's Wells', and another, 1794. £300 to £400.
    <b>Forum Auctions, May 20:</b> Fishing Satire - Cats Fishing.- Seymour (Robert). Waltonizing or - Green-land Fisherman, [c. 1830s]; together with 3 lithographs of cats fishing, [c. 1830s]. £300 to £400.
    <b>Forum Auctions, May 20:</b> Fishing Portraits.- Zoffany (Johan), After. Master James Sayer, at the age of 13, mezzotint by Richard Houston, 1772. £300 to £400.
    <center><b>Forum Auctions<br>Images of Angling:<br>The David Beazley Collection<br>of Angling Prints<br>Online Sale<br>20th May 2021</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, May 20:</b> Wilkinson (Norman). Come to Britain for Fishing, lithographic poster, [c. 1947]. £300 to £400.
    <b>Forum Auctions, May 20:</b> Scottish Fishing.- Heath (William). Sporting in the Scottish Isles no. III. Salmon Fishing, 1835; and another. £150 to £200.
    <b>Forum Auctions, May 20:</b> Simpson (Joseph). The Border Angler, drypoint, [c. 1927]. £150 to £200.

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