Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - April - 2017 Issue

Early Books for the New York Fair from Liber Antiquus

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Books for the fair.

Liber Antiquus, Early Books & Manuscripts published a catalogue for the New York Book Fair 2017. Liber Antiquus takes the word "early" quite seriously. They don't mean 19th century. Material is primarily 16th and 17th centuries, some incunabula, and even pre-printing manuscripts. Latin is a common language with earlier works, but there are other Europeans languages and many items in English represented. Subjects vary. Here are a few samples of what you will fund.

 

In the time before light pollution dimmed the nighttime skies, or electric lights and various lit monitors provided indoor entertainment after dark, people were far more familiar with the constellations. There wasn't much else you could look at at night. The first printed illustrations of the constellations came in this book: Poeticon astronomicon, edited by Jacobus Sentinus and Johannes Lucilius Santritter, published on October 14, 1482. This was the first illustrated edition of this book, which must have been far less interesting without them. The woodcut illustrations came from various medieval sources, such as manuscripts and paintings, though the sources are not given. The text is ancient, that of Gaius Julius Hyginus, a freed slave of Roman Emperor Augustus, who placed him in charge of the Palatine Library. The text explains the myths behind the various constellations, which Hyginus had copied from earlier (lost) Greek texts. Item 84. Priced at $45,000.

 

Here is an atlas which also contains depictions of the constellations, but is focused more on the then competing theories of the solar system. Item 25 is the only celestial atlas produced during the golden age of Dutch cartography, the Harmonia Macroscosmica of Andreas Cellarius. This is a second edition from 1661 (after the first of 1660), published by the Amsterdam map publisher Jan Jansson. Cellarius tries to be objective in depicting the three competing systems of the time. There is the ancient Ptolemaic system in which the earth is at the center, the sun, planets, and moons revolve around it. Then there is the still revolutionary Copernican system, with the sun at the center, the planets circling around it. Finally, there is the compromise of Tycho Brahe. Brahe still put the earth at the center, with sun and moon revolving around it, but the other planets revolve around the sun. $450,000.

 

John Cotton was the first truly notable minister to migrate to America. He had a substantial following and reputation in England, but his nonconformist views and low esteem for church protocol forced him to go underground for fear of imprisonment. The notable Puritan preacher concluded it was time to go to America, which he did in 1633. He stayed in America the remaining two decades of his life. In 1647, he published this book, Singing of Psalms a Gospel-ordinance... Singing in church was controversial among some Christians, but the Puritans, for all their staid manners, believed one should sing out to God. In this work, Cotton not only defends the practice, but describes it as an obligation. Says Cotton, "...singing of Psalms with a lively voice is an holy Duty of God’s Worship now in the days of the New Testament." Item 33. $12,000.

 

This is a pioneering work in recognizing interrelationships between psychology and physiology. Not that Juan Huarte y Navarro had it all right. His book was published in 1594, and few had that much right when it came to science at that time. Item 80 is Examen de ingenios. The examination of men's wits, the first English translation. Huarte believed that people had just one talent. There were no polymaths in Huarte's world. Next, society needed to develop that one talent in each child at an early age. He proposed that experts examine children when they were young, and then, regardless of the child's desires, set them on a course designed to develop their one great skill. This, he believed, would enable Spain to move ahead of other nations in the development of great scientists, artists, and other professions. He also had some dubious scientific beliefs, stuff about wet brains vs. dry brains, warm vs. cold, physiological differences which determined mental capacities. It was his explanation why older people had more wisdom, younger ones learned more quickly, and, of course, women were inferior to men. $14,000.

 

What was running through the mind of William Parry is unclear. A British subject who found himself in frequent financial problems, one who seemed to bounce back and forth between being pro and anti-Catholic, a spy or even a double agent, he somehow managed to earn a few pardons along the way from Queen Elizabeth, once from a death sentence. Nonetheless, he apparently plotted her assassination, or maybe it was a fake plot to draw another in, so he could rat on him and gain more favors from the Queen. Whatever the reason, it didn't work. Authorities believed his co-conspirator, Edmund Neville, instead and Parry was convicted. Plotting to kill the Queen was not a good idea in the 16th century. Parry was hanged, unable to secure one more pardon from the Queen for obvious reasons. After his execution in 1585, this book was published to let everyone know what Parry had done, and perhaps serve as a warning to others: A True and Plaine Declaration of the Horrible Treasons Practised by William Parry the Traitor, against the Queenes Majestie. Item 46. $9,500.

 

Liber Antiquus may be reached at 202-907-7429 or paul@liberantiquus.com. Their website is www.liberantiquus.com.

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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