Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - March - 2013 Issue

At the California Fair with Antiquariat Banzhaf and Antiquariat Michael Kuhn

Banzhaffeb2013

For the California Fair.

Antiquariat Banzhaf and Antiquariat Michael Kuhn issued a brochure for the recent 46th California International Antiquarian Bookfair. The two German booksellers made the trip across the ocean and across the continent to display items from the old country in one of the last places explored by their antecedents back in then era of discovery. Much of what they brought relates to those long ago times, with subjects including science, mathematics, art, botany, trade, and more. Here is a look at some of these old world items.

Here is a book that will appeal to stargazers everywhere: A Selection of Photographs of Stars, Star-Clusters, and Nebulae, together with Information concerning the Instruments and the Methods employed in the Pursuit of Celestial Photography. The author/photographer was Isaac Roberts, an engineer with a passion for astronomy. He purchased a fine telescope which he used for photography of celestial bodies. What is particularly important about Roberts' work was that he employed very long exposures, not that easy since his lens had to move with the rotation of the earth to stay focused. What he was able to photograph with long exposures was very faint objects, things not visible to the naked eye. He revealed structures previously unknown. Most significant was his photograph of the Andromeda galaxy, which revealed it was a spiral structure, unknown at the time. Item 8. Priced at €3,800 (euros, or roughly $5,098 in U.S. dollars).

Ferdinand Vrangel was a German native who became a Russian explorer. He made several long trips on behalf of Russia, but his most notable journey was one was in northeastern Siberia in the early 1820s. He traveled up the Kolyma River, which flows into the Siberian Sea, and from there east to the Bering Strait. Vrangel was able to establish that there was no land north of the Kolyma and that there was no land bridge, as many thought, between Russia and America. Vrangel's complete account of his research is found in this first edition of Physikalische Beobachtungen wahrend seiner Reisen auf dem Eismeere in den Jahren 1821, 1822 und 1823, published in 1827. Vrangel would later become deeply involved in Russian America (Alaska), serving as head of the Russian-American Company and as Governor of the settlements. He was active in expanding and developing those settlements, and late in life after his retirement, he opposed the sale of Alaska to the United States. Item 21. €2,600 (US $3,470).

Here is a guide to preserving plant specimens: Das Auftrocknen der Pflanzen fürs Herbarium, und die Aufbewahrung der Pilze... (The drying of the plants for herbarium, and storage of mushrooms). Author Friedrich Luebersdorff was a scientist, politician and landowner in 19th century Germany. This work was designed to help readers preserve the colors and shapes of their plant specimens. A section of the book is focused on collecting mushrooms. Item 18. €1,200 (US $1,601).

Perhaps this unknown collector made use of Herr Luebersdorff's advice in creating this herbarium. Item 16 is an album of 102 mounted specimens of algae. It comes in two volumes, and evidently has a wealthy provenance. It contains dark brown morocco bindings with lavish gilt decorations. It may have belonged to Princess Marie Sophie Amalie, who later became Queen of the Two Sicilies, though this is uncertain. It was created in Germany around 1850. €2,500 (US $3,338).

Here is a book that's over 500 years old (501 to be exact – it was published in 1512): Summa super libris Physicorum Aristotelis. The actually writing if far older. The author was Robert Grosseteste, who lived from 1168-1253, serving as Bishop of Lincoln the last 18 years of his life. He was something of a reformer for his era, and was highly involved in relations between the Church in Rome and that in England. However, it is not his theological duties for which he is most remembered. Grossteste translated several ancient Greek works, and was highly influenced by the works of Aristotle and others. In what is often referred to as the “Dark Ages,” he was a leader in scientific thought, at least such as it was at the time. He promoted something akin to the scientific method, where principles could be learned from observations and then applied to other situations. He also saw mathematics as being on the highest plain, science emanating from its principles, and developed some unusual theories in the field of optics. Item 1. €20,000 (US $26,572).

Antiquariat Banzhaf may be reached at 0049-(0)7071-552314 or Antiquariat-Banzhaf@t-online.de. Their website is found at www.antiquariat-banzhaf.de.

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.

Review Search

Archived Reviews

Ask Questions