Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - December - 2012 Issue

Private Press Works and Much More from The Kelmscott Bookshop

Kelmscott8

Catalog 8 from the Kelmscott Bookshop.

The Kelmscott Bookshop Rare Books has published their Catalog 8. Kelmscott focuses on the type of material created by their namesake, the Kelmscott Press. That was one of the earliest and most notable of the privates presses. So, we find much in the way of fine press work. However, there are also other types of material not always found in a Kelmscott catalogue, as the long title tells us: Artists' Books, Private Press, Art & Illustration, William Morris & the Pre-Raphaelites, Literature, Birds, Whales, Medicine, Psychology, American History, & More. All of those topics from “Birds” going forward are an expansion from the typical Kelmscott catalogue, so this one should interest a wider audience. Here are a few of the works to be found in this latest catalogue.

Here is one of those titles that fits somewhere between a collection of fine books and politics. The title is Chants for Socialists: The Day is Coming. No one will confuse this with a fine press creation. It is at best an ordinary printing. However, its author is the most notable of fine press operators, William Morris of the Kelmscott Press. This 1885 tract was published by The Socialist League Office, not Kelmscott, which was not founded until 1891. Morris was many things other than just a printer, including an artist and writer, but he was also an ardent socialist. This book attests to his deeply held political convictions. Unlike his Kelmscott books, which are almost always kept in nearly pristine condition, this pamphlet was meant to be read and its condition reflects its purpose. Item 53. Priced at $200.

Item 8 is an alphabet book. This is a fine press work from the Bay Park Press, which seems a contradiction. The last thing you want is children getting their hands on a fine press production. However, this book was hardly meant for the little ones. The title is O for Opera, and the small kids would love it, though they will never get to touch it. It has various pop-ups, movables, books within books, and other such fascinating devices. It was created by Sibyl Rubottom and Jim Machacek, and was years in the making. It is easy to see why with the intricate devices. All of this work, but only 45 copies were produced. Each of the letters describes something pertaining to the opera. The book was published in 2006. $2,500.

Alphabet books are, for whatever reason, fairly popular among private presses. Here is another. Item 12 is An Odd Bestiary, or a Compendium of Instructive and Entertaining Descriptions of Animals, Culled from Five Centuries of Travelers' Accounts, Natural Histories, Zoologies, &tc. This is an alphabet book of animals, beasts from around the world, some real, some mythical. The illustrations are accompanied by descriptions written long ago by those who encountered these strange animals. The book is the work of Alan James Robinson's Cheloniidae Press, with the illustrations also the handwork of Robinson. This copy is one of 50 of 300 that was bound in full leather. However, it is also a unique copy, as it includes 26 (of course) pencil drawings by Robinson. Published in 1982. $7,900.

This next title is appropriate to a collection of science books: One Hundred Books Famous in Science: Based on an Exhibition Held at the Grolier Club. This was from an exhibition held in New York in 1958, though this book was published in 1964. The book was the work of Harrison Horblit, who was a major collector in the sciences at the time. The copy is inscribed by Horblit to Mary and Don Hyde. They were also major collectors, and Don Hyde was President of the Grolier Club. Mary, however, wasn't even a member. No women were allowed back then. Kelmscott notes that “this book is still considered something of a bible in the field.” Item 58. $875.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Darwin, Charles. <i>On the Origin of Species.</i> Presentation Copy. Sold for $500,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Darwin, Charles. Autograph Letter Signed, 3 pp, negotiating the 2nd American edition with Appleton. Sold for $21,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Hemingway, Ernest. Autograph Letter Signed, 8 pp, Paris, 1924, to his father discussing Bullfighting, Stories, and his new baby. Sold for $25,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Shakespeare, William. <i>Corialanus.</i> London, 1623. 1st printing [Extracted from the First Folio]. Sold for $50,075.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Swift, Jonathan. <i>Gulliver's Travels.</i> London, 1726. 1st edition, Teerink's A edition, fine, large copy. Sold for $21,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Fitzroy, Robert. Autograph Letter Signed to agent Thomas Stilwell, informing him of the progress of H.M.S. Beagle. Sold for $17,575.
    <center><b>Bonhams<br> Property from the Collection of Nicole and William R. Keck II</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Shakespeare, William. <i>Sonnets.</i> 1901. 2 volumes. Printed on vellum and illuminated by Ross Turner, bound by Trautz-Bauzonnet. Sold for $13,825.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Beardsley, Aubrey. <i>The Birth, Life, and Acts of King Arthur.</i> 1893-94. 2 volumes. Contemporary painted vellum gilt by Chivers. Sold for $5,325.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Assisi, St. Francis. <i>The Canticle of Brother Sun.</i> Illuminated on vellum, for the Grolier Society. Sold for $7,575.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Rackham, Arthur. <i>Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens.</i> 1/500 copies signed by Rackham. Sold for $4,825.
    <b>Bonhams, Jun 13 results:</b> Proust, Marcel. <i>Du coté de chez Swann.</i> 1st edition, 1st issue. Inscribed by Proust. Sold for $8,825.
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Sergio Trujillo Magnenat, <i>Bogotá 1938 / IV Centenario / Juegos Deportivos Bolivarianos,</i> 1938. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> <i>McQueen Drives Porsche,</i> designer unknown, 1970. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b><br>Joe Bridge, <i>Bignan / A Des Ailes,</i> 1921. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Graham Simmons, <i>The Army Isn’t All Work,</i> 1919. $1,000 to $1,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Leonetto Cappiello, <i>Je ne fume que le nil,</i> 1912. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> <i>Attack of the 50 ft. Woman,</i> designer unknown, 1958. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Raymond Tooby, <i>Festival Guiness / Have You Tried One Yet?,</i> 1952. $600 to $900.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> Francisco Tamagno, <i>Terrot & Co. / Dijon / Cycles Motorettes,</i> 1909. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b><br>A. Hori, Oakland / General Motors, circa 1925. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 7:</b> James Montgomery Flagg, <i>Travel? Adventure? Answer – Join the Marines!,</i> circa 1918. $4,000 to $6,000.
  • <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Roberts, David. Twenty Lithographs of the Holy Land, 19th Century. $2,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Declaration by the Reps. of the United Colonies of N.A. 1775. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Composer Jerome Kern personal Letters, Albums and Other. $15,000 to $25,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Paine, Thomas. <i>Common Sense,</i> London 1776. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Stowe, Harriet Beecher. <i>Uncle Tom’s Cabin,</i> Cleveland 1852. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Hobbes, Thomas. <i>Leviathan,</i> 3rd edition, London 1651. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Anno Regni Georgii III. Intolerable Acts and other Bills, 1774. $15,000 to $20,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Wilberforce, William. An Abstract of the Evidence, 5 Letters, and two books. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Nightingale, Florence. Notes on Nursing and Signed Letters, ca. 1860 $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Tolstov, Leo. <i>War and Peace,</i> 5 volumes, 1886. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Dickinson, John. Letters from a Farmer in Pennsylvania, 1768. $1,500 to $2,500.
    <b>Lark Mason Associates, Aug 8-27:</b> Twain, Mark. <i>Tom Sawyer,</i> 1877 [and] <i>Huckleberry Finn,</i> 1885. $4,000 to $6,000.

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