Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - May - 2006 Issue

European Classics from Antiquariatt Forum

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A short list of titles from the Antiquariaat Forum.


By Michael Stillman

The Antiquariaat Forum recently printed a "short title list" of books to coincide with their participation in the New York Antiquarian Book Fair a week ago. The Antiquariaat Forum is based in the Netherlands, and their stock reflects this European location. However, they specialize in some of the very highest grade of material, and collectors at this level generally know no borders. They have numerous Dutch books to sell, and many others from Europe, including some in the way of European Americana. This no doubt has brought them interested collectors in New York as it does in Amsterdam. Here are a few samples of the items the Antiquariaat Forum is offering.

Most people don't collect geometry books, but this one is special. Item 29 is De sectionibus conicis. Tractatus geometricus, by Hugh Hamilton. Hamilton was a learned professor at the University of Dublin, and this book, intended for university students, included some new geometric theorems. However, what makes this copy notable is that it came from the library of French King Louis XV. Louis XV ascended to the throne at the age of 5 and reigned for 59 years. He is best remembered for supposedly saying, "Apres moi le deluge" - After me, the deluge. If so, he was right, as deterioration within the monarchy which began under his rule would play out 18 years later when his successor was overthrown and eventually beheaded. This book harks back to better times for the monarchy. Priced at $16,520.

George Vancouver undertook one of the most important explorations of the Pacific coast of North America from 1791-94. He sailed on behalf of the British who were jockeying for control of the area with the Spanish. Along with cordially meeting the Spanish, Vancouver explored the area, and determined that there was no northwest passage, at least not at the lower latitudes then expected. He returned to England by heading west, making his journey a circumnavigation. Vancouver died only a few years after his return, but he was able to almost complete his report, which is offered as item 58. This is the French translation, so it is titled Voyage de decouvertes, a l'ocean Pacifique du Nord, et autour de monde. That's just French for "Voyage of discovery to the North Pacific ocean and around the world." Vancouver, of course, is familiar today for two cities and an island which were named for him. $13,200.

Item 8 is a 1799 work on succulents, Plantarum succulentarum historia, by A.P. de Candolle. This is one of 100 large paper copies of this French botanical work. It is made all the more notable by being the first work illustrated by Pierre-Joseph Redoute. Redoute was a great illustrator of flowers, his most notable creations being his roses. Posters of his roses are still popular items today. He lived an amazing life. Redoute served as court illustrator to Marie Antoinette, but when the French Revolution came along and she and so many others lost their heads, he managed to keep his. He moved on to be an artist at the Museum of Natural History, and after Napoleon came to power, he worked for Empress Josephine. He survived the end of that era as well, continuing to work freely after the Restoration and into the reign of Louis-Philippe. Redoute was a survivor as well as an artist. $35,785.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 5:</b> Charles Loupot, <i>Les Cigarettes Mekka,</i> 1919. $15,000 to $20,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 5:</b> Plinio Codognato, <i>Cicli Fiat,</i> circa 1910. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 5:</b> L.N. Britton, <i>Warning! Consider the Possible Consequences,</i> c. 1917. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 5:</b> Leonardo Bistolfi, <i>Première Exposition Internationale des Arts Décoratifs Modernes,</i> 1902. $7,000 to $10,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 5:</b> Leonetto Cappiello, <i>Paquet Pernot / Biscuits Pernot,</i> 1910. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Jul 15:</b> Jessie Tarbox Beals, archive of signed photographs, 15 silver prints, c. 1930. $6,000 to $8,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 5:</b> Francesco Nonni, <i>Font Meo / Acqua Minerale Naturale,</i> 1924. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 5:</b> Frederick Winthrop Ramsdell, <i>American Crescent Cycles,</i> 1899. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 5:</b> <i>Be a Tight Wad! Own Something!</i> designer unknown, 1925. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 5:</b> Candido Aragonese de Faria, <i>Chamonix–Mont–Blanc,</i> c. 1910. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 5:</b> W.E.J., <i>Irishmen Avenge the Lusitania,</i> c. 1915. $2,000 to $3,000.
  • <center><b>Trillium Antique Prints & Rare Books<br>Fine Art<br>Antique Engravings & Lithographs<br>Works on Paper<br>Accepting bids until August 7</b>
    <b>Trillium, Aug. 7:</b> Maitres Affiches by MUCHA - Papier a cigarettes Job. 202. $5,000 to $10,000.
    <b>Trillium, Aug. 7:</b> De Bry - Map of the West Indies (including Florida, Cuba, Jamaica, Bahamas, Parts of Central & South America, Sea Monsters, Ships). $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Trillium, Aug. 7:</b> Gould - Short-billed Toucan (Ramphastos Brevicarinatus). $5,000 to $8,000.
    <center><b>Trillium Antique Prints & Rare Books<br>Fine Art<br>Antique Engravings & Lithographs<br>Works on Paper<br>Accepting bids until August 7</b>
    <b>Trillium, Aug. 7:</b> Redoute, Folio - Pale Iris - Iris flavescens. 375. $3,000 to $5,000.
    <b>Trillium, Aug. 7:</b> Gillray - Light Expelling Darkness or The Sun of the Constitution. $200 to $500.
    <b>Trillium, Aug. 7:</b> Gerard - Wild Hemp or Weed, Cannabis. 708. $150 to $450.
    <b>Trillium, Aug. 7:</b> Shaw & Nodder - Head of The Dodo. 165. $100 to $300.
  • <center><b>Sotheby’s<br>Your Own Sylvia:<br>Sylvia Plath’s letters to Ted Hughes and other items,<br>Property of Frieda Hughes<br>9 to 21 July 2021</b>
    <b>Sotheby’s, 9 – 21 July:</b> Sylvia Plath. Family photograph album ("The Hughes family Album"), 1957-1962. £30,000 to £50,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, 9 – 21 July:</b> Sylvia Plath. Typed letter signed, to Ted Hughes, on "my own private doctrine", with a poem, 5 October 1956. £15,000 to £20,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, 9 – 21 July:</b> Sylvia Plath. Pen and ink portrait of Ted Hughes, [1956]. £10,000 to £15,000.
    <center><b>Sotheby’s<br>Your Own Sylvia:<br>Sylvia Plath’s letters to Ted Hughes and other items,<br>Property of Frieda Hughes<br>9 to 21 July 2021</b>
    <b>Sotheby’s, 9 – 21 July:</b> Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath. Joint autograph letter signed, to William and Edith Hughes, March 1960. £8,000 to £12,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, 9 – 21 July:</b> Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes. Photographic portrait by David Bailey, inscribed by Plath, 1961, and another press photo. £800 to £1,200.
    <b>Sotheby’s, 9 – 21 July:</b> Tarot de Marseille. Deck of cards owned by Sylvia Plath. £4,000 to £6,000.
    <b>Sotheby’s, 9 – 21 July:</b> Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes. Pair of gold wedding rings. £6,000 to £8,000.

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