Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - June - 2014 Issue

A Summer Catalogue from Sevin Seydi Rare Books

A4830e9d-a96e-4bd8-a0d4-557782fdb5ed

A summer fair catalogue.

Sevin Seydi Rare Books of London has issued a Summer Fair Catalogue 2014. Sevin Seydi offers an atypical mix of books. Most works are early - 16th-19th century, languages are diverse, though English and French predominate, topics tend to be intellectual in nature, though the intelligence of a few of the writers might be questioned, and there is not a lot here that you will find everyday. Look for the unexpected. Here are a few samples.

 

Item 30 is an important work in American archeology, the first English (published the same year as the American first) edition of John Lloyd Stephens Incidents of Travel in the Yucatan. Stephens traveled to Central America with artist/architect Frederick Catherwood. They came upon some spectacular Mayan ruins, unknown to the outside world. Stephens began to account for what they saw while Catherwood provided illustrations. They concluded they must have come from some ancient and very skilled civilization long forgotten. Many of the sites depicted in these two volumes have since been destroyed or damaged. This account of Stephens and Catherwood's second journey to Central America was published in 1843. Priced at £500 (British pounds, or $842 U.S. dollars).

 

Victor Henry was a respected philologist (studier of languages) at the turn of the century in Paris. He was a professor of Sanskrit, but also was expert in numerous other languages. It enabled him to do comparative studies of languages. Henry wrote numerous books about language, but this one stands out as atypical, and a real oddity. Perhaps the professor was a bit gullible. Item 49 is Le Langage Martien (the Martian language). One might wonder how he learned this language back in 1901 when this book was published. It long precedes the various Mars probes. It turns out Henry learned Martian from Helene Smith, a spiritual medium. Ms. Smith was in contact with beings from Mars, who gave her 800 words in the Martian language. I cannot vouch for the accuracy of this claim. Henry then analysed the words and Martian sentence structure in detail. He determined that their sentence structure was similar to French, coincidentally enough, the only language Ms. Smith spoke. £250 (US $421).

 

Thomas Hobbes was one of the most important of political philosophers ever. Living through most of the 17th century, he promoted the concept of a “social contract” between sovereign and people. While believing in the rights of the sovereign, he also promoted the responsibilities of that authority to the people, the equality of men, and many values of liberal society. Hobbes also wrote on numerous other topics, including mathematics and physics, though not as well. Hobbes had much to say, and continued to say it for a very long time. Item 11 is his Decameron Physiologicum: or ten Dialogues of Natural Philosophy. It was published in 1678, when Hobbes was 90 years old. It was his last book. £2,500 (US $4,217).

 

It's been 200 years since England and America went to war with each other, but this next item harkens back to that last confrontation: Journal of a Cruise made to the Pacific Ocean in the United States Frigate Essex, in the Years 1812, 1813, and 1814. Containing Descriptions of the Cape Verde islands, coasts of Brazil, Patagonia, Chile, and Peru, and of the Gallapagos Islands. This may sound like a travelogue, or an exploratory expedition, but it was not. It was closer to legalized piracy, something the British were long experts on themselves. The book is by David Porter, who is noted for the first capture of a British warship during the War of 1812. He then spent the next couple of years sailing the oceans, seizing British whalers and taking prisoners of their crews. The Essex became the first American warship active in the Pacific. After the war, Porter was placed in charge of suppressing piracy in the West Indies, but when he attacked Spanish Puerto Rico without authority, in response to their imprisoning one of his officers, he was suspended and court martialed. Porter promptly resigned and took on the job as head of the Mexican Navy for three years, where he was free to attack the Spanish. He would later regain the government's good graces and serve as an American ambassador for many years. Item 25. Published in 1815. £1,000 (US $1,683).

 

Here's a word you don't see everyday: Neurypnology, or, The Rationale of Nervous Sleep... Author James Braid, for whatever reason shortened the term “neurohypnology” to “neurypnology.” That really doesn't make it any easier to spell or pronounce. Braid was an Edinburgh physician, noted for successful surgeries on club foot and correcting other deformities. However, after viewing an exhibition of what was then usually referred to as “mesmerism” or “animal magnetism,” he became interested in hypnotism. He pursued his research, first on himself, then on others, discovering much about how the process works on the mind. It achieved for him the sobriquet of “Father of Modern Hypnotism.” This copy is inscribed to author James Gaskin. Item 44. Published in 1843. £2,000 (US $3,366).

 

Sevin Seydi Rare Books may be reached at 020 7485 9801 or rarebooks@seydi.co.uk

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 28:</b> Pancho Villa, passport for a news correspondent covering the Mexican revolution, signed, 1914. $1,000 to $2,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 28:</b> Nirvana’s <i>Nevermind,</i> CD insert signed & inscribed days after release by Cobain, inscribed by Novoselic, 1991. $40,000 to $60,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 28:</b> Robert Indiana, <i>The Book of Love,</i> complete portfolio, artist’s proof set, 1997. $100,000 to $125,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 28:</b> Marcel Vertés, Colette, <i>Chéri,</i> two volumes, deluxe edition, signed by the artist, Paris, 1929. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 28:</b> Virginia Woolf, <i>Orlando,</i> first trade edition, first impression, London, 1928. $1,200 to $1,800.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 28:</b> Mark Twain, receipt for payment of the Mark Twain Public Library Tax, 1908. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 28:</b> Gustav Klimt, <i>Das Werk von Gustav Klimt,</i> portfolio, collotype plates, 1918. $15,000 to $20,000.
  • <center><b>The 19th Century Rare Book & Photograph Shop<br></b>Catalogue 190:<br>Magnificent Books & Photographs<br><b>Free on request</b>
    <b>19th Century Rare Book & Photograph Shop:</b> William Shakespeare. <i>The Second Folio</i> (1632).
    <b>19th Century Rare Book & Photograph Shop:</b> Abraham Lincoln. Autograph note on Black troops in the Union Army (1865).
    <b>19th Century Rare Book & Photograph Shop:</b> Neil Armstrong. The largest known U.S. flag flown to the Moon on Apollo 11 (1969).
    <b>19th Century Rare Book & Photograph Shop:</b> William Henry Fox Talbot. <i>The Pencil of Nature</i> (1844-1846) the first photo illustrated book.
    <b>19th Century Rare Book & Photograph Shop:</b> Albert Einstein. Letter on relativity and the speed of light (1951).
  • <center><b>Forum Auctions<br>A third selection of 16th and 17th<br>Century English Books from<br>the Fox Pointe Manor Library<br>Thursday 21st October 2021</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Oct. 21:</b> Hawking & Hunting.- Turberville (George). <i>The Booke of Falconrie or Hawking,</i> second edition, Printed by Thomas Purfoot, 1611. £6,000 to £8,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Oct. 21:</b> George Steevens' copy.- Coryate (Thomas). <i>Coryats Crudities Hastily gobbled up in five Moneths travells in France, Savoy, Italy, Rhetia...,</i> first edition, complete copy, Printed by W. S[tansby], 1611. £4,000 to £6,00
    <b>Forum Auctions, Oct. 21:</b> Butler (Charles). <i>The Feminine Monarchie: or The Historie of Bees,</i> second edition, Printed by John Haviland for Roger Jackson, 1623. £2,000 to £3,000.
    <center><b>Forum Auctions<br>A third selection of 16th and 17th<br>Century English Books from<br>the Fox Pointe Manor Library<br>Thursday 21st October 2021</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Oct. 21:</b> Brathwait (Richard). <i>The English Gentlewoman, drawne out to the full Body: expressing, What Habilliments doe best attire her…,</i> Printed by B. Alsop and T. Fawcet, for Michaell Sparke, 1631. £1,000 to £1,500.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Oct. 21:</b> Glapthorne (Henry). <i>The Ladies Priviledge,</i> first edition, Imprinted...by J. Okes, for Francis Constable, 1640. £1,000 to £1,500.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Oct. 21:</b> Witchcraft.- F. (H.) <i>A true and exact Relation Of the severall Informations, Examinations, and Confessions of the late Witches, arraigned and executed in the County of Essex,</i> first edition, 1645. £2,000 to £3,000.
    <center><b>Forum Auctions<br>A third selection of 16th and 17th<br>Century English Books from<br>the Fox Pointe Manor Library<br>Thursday 21st October 2021</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Oct. 21:</b> Hobbes (Thomas). <i>De Corpore Politico. Or the Elements of Law, Moral & Politick,</i> first edition, 1650. £2,000 to £3,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Oct. 21:</b> Early steam engine.- Worcester (Edward Somerset, 2nd Marquis). <i>A Century of the Names and Scantlings of such Inventions…,</i> first edition, 1663. £2,000 to £3,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Oct. 21:</b> Cookery.- M[ontagu] (W[alter]). <i>The Queens Closet Opened. Incomparable secrets in physick, chirurgery, preserving and candying, &c,</i> 3 parts in 1 vol., 1674. £1,500 to £2,000.
    <center><b>Forum Auctions<br>A third selection of 16th and 17th<br>Century English Books from<br>the Fox Pointe Manor Library<br>Thursday 21st October 2021</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Oct. 21:</b> Speed (John). <i>An Epitome of Mr. John Speed's Theatre of the Empire of Great Britain,</i> 2 parts in 1, 90 engraved maps, Printed for Tho. Basset, and Ric. Chiswel, 1676. £3,000 to £4,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Oct. 21:</b> Le Boe (Franciscus). <i>Of Childrens Diseases... also a Treatise of the Rickets,</i> first edition, Printed for George Downs, 1682. £2,000 to £3,000.
    <b>Forum Auctions, Oct. 21:</b> Economics.- Locke (John). <i>Several Papers Relating to Money, Interest and Trade,</i> first collected edition, Printed for A. and J. Churchill, 1696. £2,000 to £3,000.
  • <center><b>Gonnelli Auction House<br>Books and Graphics<br>26th-29th of October 2021</b>
    <b>Gonnelli Auction 31, Oct. 28th- 29th:</b><br>Books from XV to XX Century
    <b>Gonnelli Auction 31, Oct. 28th:</b><br>Manuscripts and autographs
    <b>Gonnelli Auction 31, Oct. 28th:</b><br>Artist books
    <b>Gonnelli Auction 31, Oct. 28th:</b><br>Cars & more
    <b>Gonnelli Auction 31, Oct. 28th:</b><br>Magazines
    <b>Gonnelli Auction 31, Oct. 28th- 29th:</b><br>Books from XV to XX Century
  • <center><b>Sotheby’s<br>The Luzzatto High Holiday Mahzor:<br>A Magnificent Illuminated Ashkenazic Prayer Book<br>19 October 2021</b>
    <center><b>Sotheby’s<br>The Luzzatto High Holiday Mahzor:<br>A Magnificent Illuminated Ashkenazic Prayer Book<br>19 October 2021</b>
    <center><b>Sotheby’s<br>The Luzzatto High Holiday Mahzor:<br>A Magnificent Illuminated Ashkenazic Prayer Book<br>19 October 2021</b>
    <center><b>Sotheby’s<br>The Luzzatto High Holiday Mahzor:<br>A Magnificent Illuminated Ashkenazic Prayer Book<br>19 October 2021</b>

Review Search

Archived Reviews

Ask Questions