Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - May - 2013 Issue

Six Centuries of Books and Manuscripts from Librairie Thomas-Scheler

Books and manuscripts from Librairie Thomas-Scheler.

Librairie Thomas-Scheler, of Bernard and Stephane Clavreuil, has issued a catalogue of Livres & Manuscrits du XV au XX siecle (books and manuscripts from the 15th-20th century). As one would anticipate, the catalogue is primarily in the French language. The books are more of a mix, many in French, but because of the great age of some, there are also numerous editions in Latin. An occasional book in English will also be found, and even one partly in Nahuatl (it's a grammar). Subjects vary, including travels, natural history, science, literature, language, etc. Next, we will take a look at a few.

We start with the book that is partly in Nahuatl, Arte de la Lengua Mexicana. This is the 1726 edition, published just outside Mexico City, of a grammar by Antonio Vazquez Gastelu first published in 1689. Nahuatl is an indigenous language of Mexico, once in widespread use and still used by some Indians today. Gastelu was a professor of the language and his book is considered a good start for beginners. Item 40. Priced at €10,000 (euros, or roughly US $13,081).

Item 53 is a first edition of the account of perhaps the most important of all French voyages, that of Jean-Francois de La Pérouse. It is his Voyage autour du Monde, a round the world trip from 1785-1788. It was published in 1797, but by that time, La Perouse was nowhere to be found. La Perouse was sent out to follow up on the voyages to the Pacific by James Cook. Among the aims was to try to find a northwest passage, something neither Cook, he, nor many who followed were able to achieve. However, he visited many other places, from the Pacific Northwest of America, to Hawaii, China, Japan, Korea, Russia, the Philippines and Australia. Fortunately, at times he sent his notes back home by land, just in case. His last stop was in Botany Bay, Australia, where he conducted a pleasant visit with the British. He then left, never to be heard from again. At the time of the publication of his book, his fate was still unknown, though several vessels had been dispatched to find him. It would not be until almost 40 years after his disappearance that wreckage of his ships was found off of an isolated Pacific island. €30,000 (US $39,246).

Item 37 is “a botanical masterpiece,” an important early work on various botanical specimens. The author was Leonhard Fuchs (for whom fuchsia is named). Offered is a first edition of De historia stirpium commentarii, published in 1542. While primarily an herbal, as was botanical texts before his, Fuchs presented far more detail than his predecessors. The book contains over 500 woodcuts of plants, which display them in far greater detail than offered before. The result is a true work of botany, rather than simply an herbal. Described are around 500 plants, including both wild and domesticated species. While most were plants found in his native Germany, around 100 were foreign, including several from America such as chili peppers and pumpkin, along with maize, which he misidentified as originating in Turkey. €75,000 (US $98,050).

Rare Book Monthly

  • Potter & Potter Auctions
    How History Unfolds on Paper:
    Choice Selections from the Eric C. Caren Collection
    Part IX
    Starting 10AM CST
    April 18, 2024
    Potter & Potter, Apr. 18: [RUTH, George Herman “Babe” (1895-1948)]. Signed photograph. Circa 1930s. 191 x 248 mm. $1,500 to $2,500.
    Potter & Potter, Apr. 18: HARRISON, Benjamin. Document signed (“Benj Harrison”) as governor of Virginia, certifying the service of Daniel Cumbo, a Black Revolutionary soldier. $6,000 to $9,000.
    Potter & Potter, Apr. 18: ONE OF THE FIRST PRINTED ANNOUNCEMENTS OF THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE. $4,000 to $6,000.
    Potter & Potter Auctions
    How History Unfolds on Paper:
    Choice Selections from the Eric C. Caren Collection
    Part IX
    Starting 10AM CST
    April 18, 2024
    Potter & Potter, Apr. 18: FIRST PRINTING OF LINCOLN’S IMMORTAL GETTYSBURG ADDRESS. $4,000 to $6,000.
    Potter & Potter, Apr. 18: HIGHLY IMPORTANT MORMON ARCHIVE. ALLEY, George. Archive of 23 Autograph Letters Signed by Mormon Convert George Alley to His Brother Joseph Alley. $10,000 to $20,000.
    Potter & Potter, Apr. 18: [AVIATION]. [ARMSTRONG, Neil A.] Aviation Hall of Fame Gold Medal MS64 NGC, Awarded to Neil Armstrong in 1979. $2,000 to $3,000.
    Potter & Potter Auctions
    How History Unfolds on Paper:
    Choice Selections from the Eric C. Caren Collection
    Part IX
    Starting 10AM CST
    April 18, 2024
    Potter & Potter, Apr. 18: NEWLY DISCOVERED FIRST PRINTING OF "WITH MALICE TOWARDS NONE... " FROM THE ONLY NEWSPAPER ACTUALLY ALLOWED TO PARTICIPATE IN LINCOLN’S SECOND INAUGURAL PROCESSION. $4,000 to $8,000.
    Potter & Potter, Apr. 18: THE MOST IMPORTANT GEORGE WASHINGTON DOCUMENT IN PRIVATE HANDS; GEORGE WASHINGTON’S COMMISSION AS COMMANDER IN CHIEF, 1775, ONE OF ONLY TWO ORIGINALS. $150,000 to $250,000.
    Potter & Potter, Apr. 18: A VERY RARE ACCOUNT OF BLACKBEARD’S DEATH AND ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT PIRATE ITEMS EXTANT. $3,000 to $5,000.
    Potter & Potter Auctions
    How History Unfolds on Paper:
    Choice Selections from the Eric C. Caren Collection
    Part IX
    Starting 10AM CST
    April 18, 2024
    Potter & Potter, Apr. 18: EDISON, Thomas. Patent for Edison’s Improvements on the Electric-Light, No. 219,628. [Washington, D.C.: U.S. Patent Office], 16 September 1879. $2,000 to $3,000.
    Potter & Potter, Apr. 18: [VIETNAM WAR]. The original pen used by Secretary of State William P. Rogers to sign the Vietnam Peace Agreement, Paris, 27 January 1973. $10,000 to $15,000.
    Potter & Potter, Apr. 18: SONS OF LIBERTY FOUNDER COLONEL BARRÉ ANNOTATED TITLE-PAGE, “WHICH OUGHT TO ROUSE UP BRITISH ATTENTION”. $4,000 to $6,000.
  • Swann, Apr. 11: Lot 80: Miguel de Cervantes, Don Quixote (El Ingenioso Hidalgo Don Quixote de la Mancha), Madrid: Por Juan de la Cuesta, 1608. $80,000 to $120,000.
    Swann, Apr. 11: Lot 239: J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, First London Paperback Edition, London, 1997. $6,000 to $8,000.
    Swann, Apr. 11: Lot 221: Cormac McCarthy, Blood Meridian, New York, 1985. $6,000 to $8,000.
    Swann, Apr. 11: Lot 281: Napoleon Bonaparte, Sloane, William Milligan, Life of Napoleon Bonaparte, New York, 1896. $25,000 to $35,000.
    Swann, Apr. 11: Lot 147: Christoph Jacob Trew, Plantae Selectae quarum Imagines ad Exemplaria Naturalia, Nuremberg, 1750-73. $30,000 to $50,000.
    Swann, Apr. 11: Lot 125: Guido de Monte Rochen, Manipulus Curatorum, London, 1509. $10,000 to $15,000.
    Swann, Apr. 11: Lot 197: William Faulkner, Turn About, Ottawa, 1939. $8,000 to $10,000.
    Swann, Apr. 11: Lot 159: Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol, London, 1844. $6,000 to $8,000.
    Swann, Apr. 11: Lot 119: Niccolo Machiavelli, The Works, London, 1675. $6,000 to $8,000.
    Swann, Apr. 11: Lot 45: Book of Hours in Latin, Use of Rome, illuminated with miniatures, Lyon, circa 1475-1500. $40,000 to $60,000.
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    Modern First Editions
    Available for Immediate Purchase
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Winston Churchill. The Second World War. Set of First-Edition Volumes. 6,000 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: A.A. Milne, Ernest H. Shepard. A Collection of The Pooh Books. Set of First-Editions. 18,600 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Salvador Dalí, Lewis Carroll. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Finely Bound and Signed Limited Edition. 15,000 USD
    Sotheby’s
    Modern First Editions
    Available for Immediate Purchase
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Ian Fleming. Live and Let Die. First Edition. 9,500 USD
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: J.K. Rowling. Harry Potter Series. Finely Bound First Printing Set of Complete Series. 5,650 USD
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