Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - June - 2016 Issue

British Books and Owners from Antiquates Ltd.

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British Books and Owners.

Antiquates Ltd. Fine & Rare Books has issued a catalogue of British Books and Owners. You just need those two names to understand what is offered herein. They are books written or owned by British authors and collectors, and as the bookseller's name implies, they are all very old. Some are older than others, but even the most recent material goes well back into the 19th century. With that brief, but complete description, we will plow ahead to a few examples of the material available.

 

We begin with a prayer book Americans will undoubtedly find touching. It is a short book of, A Form of Prayer to be used in all Churches, On Friday the 27th of February, 1778. That would have been all Anglican churches in England. Showing their deep concern for Americans, then in open rebellion against England, the service includes, A Prayer for our Enemies, which calls for giving "Grace...to our unhappy Fellow-subjects in America, that seeing and confessing the Error of their Ways, and having due Sense of their Ingratitude for the many Blessings of thy Providence, preserved to them by the indulgent Care and Protection of these Kingdoms, they may again return to their Duty, and make themselves worthy of thy Pardon and Forgiveness." Talk about damning with faint prayer! Another calls for divine support for King George III to "restore Tranquility among his unhappy deluded Subjects in America, now in Defiance of all Subordination and legal Government, in open Rebellion against his crown." These prayers went unanswered. Item 3. Priced at £1,250 (British pounds, or approximately $1,803 U.S. dollars).

 

King George would soon enough need prayers for his own well-being. Fortunately, he would recover from an unspecified illness, or so thought novelist and poet Samuel Jackson Pratt when he penned this Ode on his majesty's recovery; By the author of sympathy and humanity. Pratt avoids not only the nature of the King's illness, but the political maneuverings going on behind the scenes. George was suffering from mental illness, with extreme manifestations in 1788, the year before the publication of this ode to his recovery. In the background, parliament debated over a regency and the power that regent, the Prince of Wales and future George IV, would have. However, as Pratt celebrates, George III recovered before a regency was required. He would rule despite mental issues for the next 20 years, but in 1810, and for the last ten years of his life, his son took over as regent as George III drifted further into insanity and dementia. Item 72. £1,000 (US $1,443).

 

Here is another British George, and one who did much praying himself. A contemporary of George III, George Gregory was an Anglican clergyman as well as a writer. In 1885, he published Essays Historical and Moral, a collection of essays covering such subjects as "language, superstition, female education, republicanism, and suicide." However, his best known essay pertained to slavery and the slave trade. As a clerk for a Liverpool merchant while a young man, he would have been familiar with the realities of the trade. His essay has sections on "Of the Justice and Humanity of the Slave Trade," and "Of the Good Policy of the Slave Trade." Antiquates notes that those essays are "perhaps unwisely titled," because although Gregory displayed some critical cultural judgments toward the Africans, as typical for his time, he was actually sympathetic to the slaves and an abolitionist. He states that "slavery is directly contrary to the obvious principles of justice and humanity." Item 40. £500 (US $721).

 

If there was ever a tragic literary family, it must be the Brontes. After two older sisters and their mother died when they were young, sisters Charlotte, Emily and Anne became very close, taking to writing stories together. In 1846, they managed to get a book of poetry published. As women writers were not well accepted at the time, they used a vague pseudonym as the author, Currer, Ellis, and Acton Bell. In 1846, their book was published under the simple title Poems. It was a monumental flop. About 39 copies were distributed, but as few as two may actually have been sold. However, the following year, Charlotte published her first novel, Jane Eyre. An Autobiography. Edited by Currer Bell. This one was a smashing success, creating a sudden demand for more works from "Currer Bell." The unsold copies were given a new title page and republished in 1848 (though the title page still says 1846). Item 20 is a copy of this second issue of Poems. Sadly for this tragic family, Anne and Emily as well as their only brother died between 1848 and 1849, leaving Charlotte the sole survivor. She too succumbed a few years later in 1855. £1,750 (US $2,525).

 

Item 32 is what was effectively the first edition in English of the massive, groundbreaking French Encyclopedie of Denis Diderot and Denis D'Alembert. The Encyclopedie was, as one might expect of an Encyclopedia, a compilation of everything under the sun, and yet it was still more. It was the voice of the Enlightenment, expounding on very liberal philosophies for its time, such as tolerance, freedom, and democracy. An abortive attempt had been made to translate the entire text to English earlier, but only a small portion was completed. This, then, was the first completed publication, though it was hardly intended to translate it all. Rather, this edition is titled Select essays from the encyclopedy, being the most curious, entertaining, and instructive parts of that very extensive work... It was published in 1772, the year the final part of the French original was completed. This English version did not wow the reviewers, a contemporary writer in The London Magazine saying, "...the translation is lame, the spirit and elegance of the original totally evaporated." But, it is a first. £850 (US $1,226).

 

Antiquates Fine and Rare Books may be reached at 07921 151496 or sales@antiquates.co.uk. Their website is found at www.antiquates.co.uk.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Helvelius. Two Autograph Letters Signed to Francis Aston, Royal Society Secretary, noting his feud with Robert Hooke, 5 pp total, 1685. $70,000 to $100,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Newton, Isaac. Autograph manuscript on God, 4 pp, c.1710, "In the beginning was the Word...."?$100,000 to $150,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. First edition, first issue. Untrimmed copy in contemporary boards. $30,000 to $50,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Lincoln, Abraham. Signed photograph, beardless portrait with Civil War provenance. $80,000 to $120,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> IMPEACHMENT. Original engrossed copy of the first Andrew Johnson impeachment resolution vote. $120,000 to $180,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Mucha, Alphonse. 11 original pencil drawings for?<i>Andelicek z Baroku,</i> "Litte Baroque Angel," Prague, 1929. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Einstein, Albert. Annotated Galley Proofs for <i>The Meaning of Relativity.</i> 1921. $25,000 to $35,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Silverstein, Shel. Original maquette for <i>The Giving Tree,</i> 34 original drawings. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Roth, Philip. Typed Manuscript with substantial autograph corrections for an unpublished sequel to <i>The Breast.</i> $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Taupin, Bernie. Autograph Manuscript, the original draft of lyrics for Elton John's "Candle in the Wind," 2 pp, 1973. $100,000 to $150,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> HARVEY, WILLIAM. <i>De Motu Cordis et Sanguinis in Animalibus Anatomica Exercitatio.</i> Padua: 1643. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> CESALPINO, ANDREA. <i>Peripateticarum Quaestionum Libri Quinque.</i> Venice: 1571. $30,000 to $40,000.
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> Francis Scott Key, <i>Star Spangled Banner,</i> first printing, c. 1814-16. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> William Sydney Porter, a.k.a. “O. Henry,” archive of drawings made to illustrate a lost mining memoir, c. 1883-84. $30,000 to $40,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> [Bay Psalm Book], printed for Hezekiah Usher of Boston, Cambridge, c. 1648-65. $50,000 to $75,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> Book of Mormon, first edition, Palmyra, 1830. $40,000 to $60,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> <i>Noticia estraordinario,</i> probable first announcement in Mexico City of the fall of the Alamo, 1836. $40,000 to $60,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> Patrick Gass, first edition of earliest first-hand account of the Lewis and Clarke expedition, Pittsburgh, 1807. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> Diploma from the Princeton Class of 1783, commencement attended by Washington & Continental Congress. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> <i>Sprague Light Cavalry!</i> color-printed broadside, NY, 1863. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> <i>The Lincoln & Johnson Union Campaign Songster,</i> Philadelphia, 1864. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> Lucy Parsons, labor organizer, albumen cabinet card, New York, 1886. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> Daniel L.F. Swift, journal as third mate on a Pacific Whaling voyage, 1848-1850. $3,000 to $4,0000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> Two photos of Thomas Moran, Grand Canyon, silver prints, 1901. $1,500 to $2,500.
  • <center><b>Dominic Winter Auctioneers<br>Printed Books, Maps & Documents, The Library of Dawson Turner<br>4 March 2020</b>
    <b>Dominic Winter, Mar. 4:</b> Beck (Henry). <i>London Underground Transport,</i> 1934. Iconic original poster. £20,000 to £30,000.
    <b>Dominic Winter, Mar. 4:</b> Turner (Dawson, 1775-1858). ‘Journal of a Three Weeks' Tour, with Thos. Phillips’, 1815. Unpublished illustrated manuscript. £7,000 to £10,000.
    <b>Dominic Winter, Mar. 4:</b> Sander (Frederick). <i>Reichenbachia,</i> 4 volumes, 1st edition, 1886-95. Ex libris Sir David Salomons (1797-1873). £3,000 to £5,000.
    <center><b>Dominic Winter Auctioneers<br>Printed Books, Maps & Documents, The Library of Dawson Turner<br>4 March 2020</b>
    <b>Dominic Winter, Mar. 4:</b> Mary I, Queen of England (1516-1558). Illuminated grant of arms on vellum to John Hombreston, 1554. £2,000 to £3,000.
    <b>Dominic Winter, Mar. 4:</b> Restoration London. Album of important autographs, c.1660-90. Including a letter from Sir William Petty to John Evelyn. £1,000 to £1,500.
    <b>Dominic Winter, Mar. 4:</b> Levellers. <i>The Womens Petition to Over Cromwell,</i> 1651. Extremely rare broadside, 2 copies in libraries. £1,000 to £1,500.
    <center><b>Dominic Winter Auctioneers<br>Printed Books, Maps & Documents, The Library of Dawson Turner<br>4 March 2020</b>
    <b>Dominic Winter, Mar. 4:</b> Catherine of Siena. <i>Lettere devotissime,</i> Venice, 1562. Ex libris Giacomo Castelvetro (1546-1616), with marginalia. £1,000 to £1,500.
    <b>Dominic Winter, Mar. 4:</b> Kane (Brig. Gen. Richard, 1666-1732). ‘A Plan of the Town, Mountain and Bay of Gibraltar’, 1712. Pen and ink and watercolour. £1,000 to £1,500.
    <b>Dominic Winter, Mar. 4:</b> Costa (Emanuel Mendes da). <i>A Natural History of Fossils,</i> 1st edition, 1757. £600 to £800.
    <center><b>Dominic Winter Auctioneers<br>Printed Books, Maps & Documents, The Library of Dawson Turner<br>4 March 2020</b>
    <b>Dominic Winter, Mar. 4:</b> Blaeu (Johannes). <i>Britannia Anglo-Saxonum,</i> c.1646. £700 to £1,000.
    <b>Dominic Winter, Mar. 4:</b> Donne (John). <i>Devotions,</i> 1st edition, 1624. Contemporary vellum gilt, £700 to £1,000.
    <b>Dominic Winter, Mar. 4:</b> Baden-Powell (Robert). <i>Scouting for Boys,</i> 1st edition, 1908. £800 to £1,200.

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