Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - February - 2021 Issue

A New Selection from The Veatchs Arts of the Book

Catalogue 95 from the Veatchs.

The Veatchs Arts of the Book has published their Catalogue 95. The long title is New Acquisitions, Artists' Books, a Rare Bickham, Bindings, Typographic Treasures, Two Versions of the 1893 Book of Common Prayer, Thirty Years of Henry Morris Correspondence and Ephemera. The book arts is where everything is beautiful, books and printed items are works of art, as much as or more than text. They are books that can be appreciated regardless of whether you can read. Here are a few samples from the Veatchs' latest collection


This is one of those two 1893 books of common prayer, the more luxurious copy. The long title is The Book of Common Prayer and Administration of the Sacraments and other Rites and Ceremonies of the Church According to the Use of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America: together with the Psalter or Psalms of David. It was printed by Theodore De Vinne's De Vinne Press. It is in the original vellum, 566 pages printed in black and red within red rules. Out of 500 copies, this is one of 75 that were printed for the Episcopal Revision Committee. The other copies had been printed with medieval floral borders, somewhat out of place with the modern type. This issue replaced the original borders with red rules. This copy has been signed by 13 members of the Episcopal Revision Committee, one of whom was the wealthy industrialist J. P. Morgan. Item 9. Priced at $5,000.


Next we have a humorous book, with the cover title of Quads Within Quads, or inside, Quads for Authors, Editors, and Devils. It is an oddball piece of humor from printer Andrew White Tuer, published in 1884. For the uninitiated, quads are metal spacers used to separate characters when placed between the metal type in the printing presses that were used in 1884. The book contains printer's jokes that were published in the Paper and Printing Trades Journal. This publication was published by Fields & Tuer, closing down in 1896. If you don't get the jokes don't feel bad. Not many people still understand the lingo of 19th century printing presses. There is an oddity which explains the title of Quads Within Quads. Within the main book in a hollowed out compartment is a “midget folio,” a miniature version of the same book printed on handmade banknote paper. Item 40. $1,200.


This book comes from 1985, but parts of it are almost five centuries older. The title is Aldus Manutius and the Development of Greek Script and Type in the Fifteenth Century, by Nicolas Barker. Aldus and his Aldine Press of Venice were groundbreakers in their time. He sought to print classic works and make them available to the masses for a reasonable price. Of course, these were small masses as few people could read at that time. They were the “masses” of educated, upscale people. Aldus was noted for his type designs, including italic type which he developed. This is a leaf book, which explains the five centuries-old comment about this work. It contains leaves from the Aldine Press Aristotle (1497), Crastonus' Dictionarium Graecum (1497), Euripides (1503), and the Septuagint (1518). Offered is one of 20 copies (of a total of 200) with particularly notable leaves. Publisher Chiswick Book Shop meant these copies to go to special customers, but this was not announced for fear of hurting the feelings of those who were not quite so special. Item 2. $3,500.


Here is an unusual one: Frasconi's Composite Side Show, published in 1978. Antonio Frasconi was a Uruguayan who came to America and got a low-level job at a museum where his skills as a woodcutter were noticed. It led to a long career as an artist. This item displays 22 of his woodcuts in a French-fold design. The images are odd to say the least. The Veatchs explain, “Akin to a circus side show of freaks, there are anthropomorphic animals with human heads or humans with animal heads. There's a male peacock with the upper torso of a woman playing a violin. A row of figures in black business suits, white shirts, and ties sport the heads of a buzzard, horse, donkey, lion, rabbit, goat.” The figures are all in black, but are viewed through various shades of colored tissue paper. Item 13. $3,250.


The title of this next book is Fleuronologia. This is not some sort of rare disease. This is a book about fleurons, those flower-like designs you often see in books. They are usually used as borders. The book comes from Leonard Baskin, artist, illustrator, sculptor, and publisher. It was printed by his Gahenna Press in 1996. The book contains 32 pages of Baskin's color etchings of fleurons. They are not used as borders but are displayed as the feature of each page. They are not limited to flowers or designs either. Baskin says, “Here are dancing sprites and spritely insects, heavy birds & thick bovines & gossamer thin arabesques, leering terminal figures & careening unknown avians, fleuron bedecked skulls & and a specter or two.” Each plate is numbered and signed by Baskin, it includes two small color etchings, and the copy is #23 of 26 copies signed by Baskin and Sidney Berger, who contributed an essay on the history of fleurons. Item 3. $16,000.


The Veatchs Arts of the Book can be reached at 716-648-0361 or veatchs@veatchs.com. Their website is www.veatchs.com.

Rare Book Monthly

  • Toronto Book Auctions
    March 6, 2024
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: [ART BOOK MONOGRAPH] DAVID BURLIUK WITH ORIGINAL DRAWING and Signed twice. David Burliuk Rare ACA Gallery exhibition catalogue, undated. CA$400 – 800
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: [ART BOOK MONOGRAPH] KAWS: COMPANIONSHIP IN THE AGE OF LONELINESS. Text by Margaret Atwood. National Gallery of Victoria, Australia, 2019. $CA400 - 800
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: [ART BOOK MONOGRAPH] LAWRENCE WEINER: POSTERS. Nova Scotia College of Art, Canada,1987. CA$800 – 1,200
    Toronto Book Auctions
    March 6, 2024
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: WILBUR SMITH: THE DARK OF THE SUN. Heinemann, UK, 1965. Signed First edition. CA$800 – 1,200
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: ROBERTSON DAVIES: LEAVEN OF MALICE. SIGNED Clark, Irwin, & Co., Canada. 1954. 1st edition. CA$400 – 600
    Toronto Book Auctions
    March 6, 2024
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: [MILITARY FICTION]. 8 VOLUMES SOLD TOGETHER. INCLUDING: Canada's Royal Military College. REVIEW, THE STONE FRIGATE, A HISTORY OF THE RMC… CA$300 – 400
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: [WW1] CANADIAN (C.S.E.F.) SIBERIA 1918-1919 PHOTO ALBUM. With approximately 303 original official war photographs, postcards, and personal photographs. CA$8,000 – 10,000.
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: HANS BELLMER: THE DOLL. 1995, 1st Ed. CA$150 – 300.
    Toronto Book Auctions
    March 6, 2024
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: FAN HO; HONG KONG YESTERDAY. ModernBooks edition, 2006. First edition. 4to. CA$300 – 600.
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: TARYN SIMON: AN AMERICAN INDEX OF THE HIDDEN AND UNFAMILIAR. Hatje Cantz, Germany, 2012. Third edition. CA$600 – 1,000.
    Toronto Book Auctions, Mar. 6: BARBARA KRUGER PICTURE/READINGS. [Self-Published], 1978 First edition. CA$800 – 1,200.
  • Sotheby’s
    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
    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
    Sotheby’s, Available Now: Ernest Hemingway. A Farewell to Arms. First Edition, First Printing. 4,200 USD
  • Gonnelli:
    Auction 50
    Books, Autographs & Manuscripts
    March 6th-7th 2024
    Gonnelli: Cramer, [Picasso, Chagall , Miró], Trente ans d'activité. Starting price 4800€
    Gonnelli: Futurism
    Gonnelli: Avienus, Opera. 1488. Starting price 1200€
    Gonnelli: Vimont, Relation de ce qui s'est passé en la Nouvelle France, en l'année 1642. Starting price 5000€
    Gonnelli: Goedart, Metamorphosis et historia naturalis insectorum. 1662.
    Gonnelli: Il Petrarcha con la spositione di M. Giovanni Andrea Gesualdo.
    Gonnelli: Poblacion, De usu astrolabi compendium.

Review Search

Archived Reviews

Ask Questions