Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - April - 2018 Issue

From Black Sea to China Sea from Shapero Rare Books

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From the Black Sea to the China Sea.

Shapero Rare Books has published a catalogue entitled, From Black Sea to China Sea. New Acquisitions in Asia 2018. That may be only a single continent, but this catalogue will take you from the edge of Europe to the Western Pacific. Shapero has divided the continent into five regions to make it easier to find what you want. They are: (1) Turkey, the Levant, Holy Land, and Arabia; (2) Central Asia; (3) Indian Subcontinent; (4) South-East Asia; and (5) China & Mongolia. If your collecting focus is east of Europe and west of America, you will surely find material of significant interest. These are a few selections.

 

The western end of Asia was the source of much our knowledge of the earliest modern societies. It was, after all, the "Cradle of Civilization." Heinrich Schliemann was an amateur archaeologist who devoted much of his time (and fortune) to making discoveries in the ancient world. Though a German, he made his fortune in Gold Rush California, and still more in Russia. With that, he headed to what he correctly identified as the location of ancient Troy. Schliemann believed that ancient Greek writings were based on historical fact, and his research helped to establish his point. While Schliemann's excavations were not conducted as carefully as one would want today for preservation, standards were not that well understood in the 1870s and 1880s. Item 31 is an account of his excavations in Troy in 1862, Troja. Results of the Latest Researches and Discoveries on the Site of Homer's Troy and in the Heroic Tumuli and other Sites, made in the Year 1882. It was published in that same year. Priced at £850 (British pounds, or approximately $1,177 in U.S. dollars).

 

Paulo Emilio Botta was another 19th century researcher determined to unravel the ancient past. Botta was appointed French Consul to Mosul in 1842, an appointment he made the most of to search ancient sites in the area. He published his findings in 1849-50 in Monument de Ninive. Botta thought he found the ancient site of Nineveh. He didn't, but no matter. It was the palace of Sargon II, a magnificent structure built around 710 BC. Sargon was the leader of Assyria, who conquered Babylon and Israel, capturing both land and wealth. He died as he lived, in battle. Botta excavated a complex of rooms and discovered numerous carved and inscribed gypsum slabs, and colossal winged bulls with human heads that look like genetic engineering gone terribly awry. Some of these sculptures were shipped to the Louvre where they became very popular. Botta's book contains numerous plates of illustrations along with descriptions of the excavations. The book was highly costly, 2,000 francs, which put it out of reach of many other scholars. Item 45. £30,000 (US $41,559).

 

Joseph Dalton Hooker was one of Britain's most famous botanists, a contemporary, best friend, and supporter of Charles Darwin. Darwin asked Hooker to help prepare his botanical notes after his return from South America, and ran his conclusions past his friend as he developed his theory of evolution. Hooker was one of the first to know, and first to defend Darwin's theory once it was made public. Hooker undertook several expeditions himself to study plants. In this case, he climbed high in the Himalayas gathering specimens. If that sounds cold, Hooker was prepared, having earlier done the same on Ross' Antarctic expedition. He spent 1848-50 in the Himalayas, climbing to 19,000-20,000 feet. At the time, it was the highest any European had climbed. Hooker's account is entitled Himalayan Journals, published in 1854. Item 83. £2,500 (US $3,463).

 

Next we have another man associated with cold climates, though he managed to stay away from them himself. The northernmost point in the United States, Point Barrow, Alaska, is named for him. Sir John Barrow spent most of the final four decades of his life in the Admiralty, and as such, he promoted British exploration of the Arctic. He later wrote about these explorations. However, this is an account of an earlier voyage, to a much warmer place, one in which he was a participant. Item 98 is A Voyage to Cochinchina, in the Years 1792 and 1793. Cochinchina is now the southern part of Vietnam. Barrow accompanied a mission to the Emperor of China as an interpreter, but the voyage made several stops along the way, including Madeira, Rio, and Batavia. Barrow provides an account of the voyage, along with much information on Cochinchina taken from a manuscript by French naval officer Captain Barissy. £2,750 (US $3,810).

 

This is the rare and beautiful A Panoramic View of the Holy City of Benares. Benares, more often known as Varanasi, is the holiest of cities to Hindus. It is also one of the oldest cities. Located in India, it is a site of pilgrimages, with many believing that those who die there will be freed from the unending cycle of birth and rebirth. This panorama by John Dalrymple was printed and published in Calcutta in 1827. When opened, it measures 9 ½" x 126". £22,500 (US $31,171).

 

Shapero Rare Books may be reached at +44 (0)20 7493 0876 or rarebooks@shapero.com. Their website is www.shapero.com.

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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