Rare Book Gallery
An album of original watercolour...
GREIN (artist, Dutch/Flemish school, 17th century)
Bookseller: Donald Heald Rare Books
[Holland: seventeenth century]. Folio. (12 1/2 x 8 inches). 48 watercolours of tulips on vellum, interleaved with plain paper with horn and crown... More
[Holland: seventeenth century]. Folio. (12 1/2 x 8 inches). 48 watercolours of tulips on vellum, interleaved with plain paper with horn and crown watermark, each watercolour titled in ink below image, the first watercolour signed "Grein" at the lower right. Contemporary vellum over pasteboard, contained in a modern dark green morocco box, the covers with gilt-ruled borders, the spine in six compartments with raised bands, lettered in the second, the others with elaborate repeat pattern made up from flower-sprays and various small tools. A spectacular album containing finely-executed images on vellum of all the greatest 17th century varieties of tulips: a landmark in the history of botanical art in the Low Countries, and a unique record of the bulbs that inspired the speculative financial-madness called Tulipomania. The tulip, introduced to Europe in the middle of the sixteenth century from the Ottoman Empire, experienced a strong growth in popularity boosted by competition among the wealthy for possession of the rarest varieties. The tulip rapidly became a coveted luxury item, appearing in main-stream art as a symbol of wealth and as a decorative motif on ceramics and textiles. Special varieties were given exotic names or named after popular figures of the time: generals, admirals, etc. The most spectacular and highly sought-after tulips were the so-called "broken" varieties. These had two or more vivid colours: often a base colour of white or cream with red lines, or flames to the petals. The present album is devoted exclusively to these most expensive varieties. Tulipomania eventually reached a level where fantastic, unsustainable prices were being paid for individual bulbs. In 1637, the bubble burst and the over-heated market collapsed. For some years after this, the tulip's popularity remained at a low level but by the time the present album was produced its unique beauty was beginning once again to be appreciated. Tulip albums were produced for two principle reasons. First, as a selling tool for the bulb dealers: accurate images of what the bulbs they were offering were going to look like were obviously vital and the high prices of the tulipomania era set a precedent of employing artists of a very high quality to record the colours and details of the bulbs. These albums are almost exclusively made up of drawings on paper. One of the best known examples of this type of album is probably the 1637 tulip book of P. Cos, a nurseryman from Haarlem, Holland (now in the collection of the Wageningen Universiteit en Researchcentrum). Second, albums were produced as a collective record of the ephemeral beauty of the blooms grown by individuals, either professional growers or wealthy amateurs. The present album probably falls into this latter category: the original presentation of this album is on a much more luxurious scale than trade albums. The most obvious sign of this is the fact that each of the drawings is on vellum. Vellum, especially the prepared vellum used for the present album, was an expensive luxury material and an indicator that the drawings were commissioned by a wealthy individual (in France, for instance, King Louis XIV had all his botanical drawings executed on vellum: the so-called "velins du Roi"). Tulip albums, whatever their origin, are now very rare: according to Sam Segal (a world-renowned expert on tulips and the author of "Tulips in Visual Art",) there are now only about 50 of these albums extant. This includes albums with drawings on paper and also 18th century albums; thus, the actual number of seventeenth century albums with drawings on vellum is almost certainly no more than a handful. Most albums are in institutional collections, so the present album may well be the final example offered on the open market. Sam Segal offered the following information about the present album: the artist "Grein" is an unrecorded artist, but his name "is a Dutch name known since the early seventeenth century." The paper used for the interleaves is watermarked with a horn and crown, similar to paper known to have been made in Amsterdam and Leiden from 1665. The tulip types are from this period as well, before a relative great change in form and size during the eighteenth century. The flowers themselves carry names that "are known from the 1630s and 1640s, the period of and directly after the tulipomania ...they include the very expensive types of that period, like the 'Semper Augustus' and 'Viceroy.' As in many tulip books meant as a catalogue of a seller of bulbs, the illustrations show many related types. That might mean that they are tulips from one nursery or one collection from which the owner gave an order to the artist to paint his collection. The names of some of the tulips could point to a possible commissioner of the album, like 'General Doriszlav' and 'Grootvorst van Moscovicz.'" Dash,Tulipomania , London, 1999; Goldgar,Tulipomania , Chicago, 2007; Pavord,The Tulip,London, 1999; van der Goes (editor) Tulipomanie, Zwolle/Dresden, 2004; Wijnands,Tulips portrayed, Wageningen, 1987. Less
Price: 225000.00 USD
[GUTENBERG BIBLE]. A noble fragment :...
GUTENBERG, Johannes (c. 1398 - 1468)
Bookseller: Douglas Stewart Fine Books
With a bibliographical essay by A. Edward Newton. New York : Gabriel Wells, 1921. Designed by Bruce Rogers and printed by William Edwin Rudge.... More
With a bibliographical essay by A. Edward Newton. New York : Gabriel Wells, 1921. Designed by Bruce Rogers and printed by William Edwin Rudge. Folio, full black blindstamped gilt-lettered morocco by Stikeman & Co. (corners a little rubbed, a few mm loss to foot of spine), gilt dentelles,  pp. preliminary text, with an original leaf of the Gutenberg Bible tipped-in. The leaf measures 388 x 287 mm. printed on recto and verso, black gothic lettering of forty-two lines in double columns, rubricated in red, with headlines, chapter numbers, and large initial letters in red and blue, being three two-line initials (two 'E's' and one 'P'), three Roman numeral verse numbers, and the headline. A very good example with wide margins, some minor foxing, the ink black and crisp. The text is the Vulgate Latin text of Jeremiah Chapters 15 and 16 in their entirety, with the closing ten lines of Chapter 14 and first eight lines of Chapter 17. "Then said the LORD unto me, Though Moses and Samuel stood before me, yet my mind could not be toward this people: cast them out of my sight, and let them go forth." A LEAF FROM THE FIRST WESTERN BOOK PRINTED BY MOVABLE TYPE. "Its printers were competing in the market hitherto supplied by the producers of high-class manuscripts. The design of the book and the layout of the book were therefore based on the book-hand and manuscript design of the day, and a very high standard of press-work was required--and obtained--to enable the new mechanical product to compete successfully with its hand-produced rivals. Standards were set in quality of paper and blackness of ink, in design and professional skill, which the printers of later generations have found difficult to maintain." (Printing and the Mind of Man). Only forty-eight copies of the Bible are known, most of which are incomplete. The provenance of this leaf is the imperfect Mannheim-Zouch-Sabin copy, divided into leaves and sections by New York bookseller Gabriel Wells nearly a century ago. The Gutenberg Bible, the first complete book printed in Western culture using the radical technology of movable pieces of type, is perhaps the most famous and important book in the world. Complete examples are now rarely procurable in the marketplace, yet a single leaf, extracted from an incomplete copy of the Bible by New York dealer Gabriel Wells in 1921, captivates the imagination when one contemplates the impact this revolution of the Renaissance had on humanity. Printing and the Mind of Man 1. Exhibited: 'The Mirror of the World', State Library of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia, October 2009 - October 2011, alternating on view with the example of The Noble Fragment held in that institution's collection. Less
Price: 85000.00 AUD
GEOGRAPHICAL, HISTORICAL, POLITICAL,...
Bookseller: William Reese Company - Americana
Philadelphia: B. Franklin and D. Hall, 1755.. Folding handcolored engraved map by James Turner after Lewis Evans. Quarto. Full tan polished tree... More
Philadelphia: B. Franklin and D. Hall, 1755.. Folding handcolored engraved map by James Turner after Lewis Evans. Quarto. Full tan polished tree calf by Riviere, covers with a gilt roll tool border, spine in six compartments with raised bands, red morocco label in the second compartment, the others with an overall repeat decoration in gilt, marbled endpapers, a.e.g. Map backed on linen. Very good. One of the most important maps of the British colonies done prior to Independence, a landmark in American cartography and an important Franklin printing. Lewis Evans' map, titled "A General Map of the Middle British Colonies in America," shows the east coast of North America from Montreal and New England to the northern border of North Carolina, and also includes the Ohio valley in the west. The Evans map appeared in 1755, the same year as John Mitchell's famous map, with Evans drawing from his original surveys and Fry and Jefferson's 1753 map of Virginia. Evans' map acknowledges French claims to all lands northwest of St. Lawrence Fort, resulting in criticism from New York, notably the New York Mercury. Despite the controversy, Evans's work was very popular (there were eighteen editions between 1755 and 1814), and was famously used by General Braddock during the French and Indian War. Evans gives a detailed geographical description of the middle and southern colonies, particularly notable for an early description of the Ohio country, and gives a good description of the Carolina back country. Evans was also eager for the British to expand into the South, especially West Florida, to challenge the French and Spanish in the Gulf. According to Governor Pownall, writing in 1776, the map was the authority for settling boundary disputes in the region as it so accurately depicted the region. The present example is a very fine copy of the second edition, first issue of the text published by Benjamin Franklin (i.e. without an additional London imprint below Franklin's) and contains a rare example of the first issue of the map (i.e. without "The Lakes Cataraqui" just north of Lake Ontario). Significantly, the map present in this copy is with lovely full period hand-coloring. Sabin notes that many copies of Evans' tract do not include the map, and that only some copies are fully colored, as is this copy. On this second edition of the text, published the same year as the first, Miller notes: "This revised second edition of Evan's analysis of his General Map of the Middle British Colonies is virtually a page-for-page resetting of the first edition with sub- titles added on pp. 6 and 11, and the numeral 2 inserted to the left of the signature on the directional line of the first two leaves of each quire in fours." "The map is considered by historians to be the most ambitious performance of its kind undertaken in America up to that time, and its publication was a milestone in the development of printing arts in the colonial period" - Schwartz & Ehrenberg. MILLER 606. CAMPBELL 543. EVANS 7412. SABIN 23175. HOWES E226. CHURCH 1003. WHEAT & BRUN 298. BROWN, EARLY MAPS OF THE OHIO VALLEY 41. CRESSWELL, "COLONY TO COMMONWEALTH," pp.53-54, 82. DEGREES OF LATITUDE 34. GARRISON, CARTOGRAPHY OF PENNSYLVANIA, pp.269-74. PHILADELPHIA: THREE CENTURIES OF AMERICAN ART, pp.64-67. SCHWARTZ & EHRENBERG, p.165. STEPHENSON & McKEE, VIRGINIA IN MAPS, p.82. SUAREZ, SHEDDING THE VEIL 57. THE WORLD ENCOMPASSED 255. Klinefelter, "Lewis Evans and his Maps" in TRANSACTIONS OF THE AMERICAN PHILOSOPHICAL SOCIETY, Vol. 61, no. 7 (1971). Stevens, LEWIS EVANS AND HIS MAP (London, 1905). Less
Price: 280000.00 USD