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
Bookseller: Jonathan A. Hill, Bookseller, Inc.
Roman letter, 72 leaves, 30 lines, five fine woodcut initials with a white interlaced branchwork design on a black ground. Guide letters for the... More
Roman letter, 72 leaves, 30 lines, five fine woodcut initials with a white interlaced branchwork design on a black ground. Guide letters for the smaller initials. Small 4to (200 x 147 mm.), antique blindstamped calf (extreme inner margins of five or six leaves expertly & almost invisibly strengthened, verso of final leaf a little dusty). Nuremberg: Johann M?r of K?sberg (Regiomontanus), [ca. 1473-74]. First edition of the first printed book on astronomy; of the greatest rarity with only two other copies having appeared at auction in the last fifty years. "The work of Manilius was the main exemplar of that 'poetic astronomy' which exerted such a powerful influence on German humanist thought from Regiomontanus to Conrad Celtis and beyond."-Rose, The Italian Renaissance of Mathematics, p. 105. Regiomontanus envisioned the new invention of the printing press as one of the chief means of restoring mathematics and astronomy. It was this book and the others in Regiomontanus' publishing program with which he formally launched the renaissance of astronomy and mathematics, issuing the most important texts in edited and corrected editions. The Astronomicon describes the sphere, zodiacal and other constellations, great circles, comets, and astral influences on human beings. It put forward a number of sound astronomical hypotheses, especially relating to the nature of the stars, and became an important textbook, representing the most advanced views on astronomy of ancient Roman times. The text of the poem, composed in the first century A.D., had only recently been discovered when it received this, its first printing. This book was printed at the press of Regiomontanus, the foremost astronomer of the time, who established the first observatory in Europe, and was the first publisher of astronomical and mathematical literature. He had finally settled in Nuremberg after a career in Italy under Cardinal Bessarion and, more recently in Vienna, as librarian to Mathias Corvinus. The press was probably a private one and not a commercial office; it was the first scientific publishing house. Its output was limited to some ten titles, all issued within a year and a half, of which this is the only one to bear a full colophon. The type, apparently never used again, seems to have been cut in imitation of the smaller type of Sweynheym and Pannartz at Rome. It is amongst the most elegant of the early roman types used in Germany. This and the second edition (Bologna: ca. 1474) were printed from independent sources. The great modern editor of Manilius, A.E. Housman, considered this the more important textually and believed that Regiomontanus must have corrected the text himself as so many corrections are not to be found in any surviving manuscript (Housman, V, p. xvii). Neither of Manilius' other great editors, Scaliger and Bentley, knew of this edition, and so Regiomontanus' corrections were incorporated into the text only in the 20th century. This is an extremely rare book. As we have mentioned above, only two other copies have appeared at auction in the past fifty years. The ISTC-in-progress records only the Chapin, Harvard, Huntington, and Morgan Library copies in the U.S. Fine copy. 18th-century crowned stamp on outer margin of title and foot of final leaf. ❧ B.M.C., II, p. 456. Goff M-202. Klebs 661.1. Lalande, p. 9-"Le premier livre d'astronomie qu'on imprima." Stillwell, The Awakening Interest in Science during the First Century of Printing 1450-1550, 75. . Less
Price: 175000.00 USD
The Great Gatsby.
Fitzgerald, F. Scott.
Bookseller: Raptis Rare Books
New York: Charles Scribners. 1925.. First edition, first printing with "chatter" on p. 60, line 16, "northern" on p. 119, line 22, "it's" on p.... More
New York: Charles Scribners. 1925.. First edition, first printing with "chatter" on p. 60, line 16, "northern" on p. 119, line 22, "it's" on p. 165, line 16, "away" on p. 165, line 29, "sick in tired" on p. 205, lines 9-10, and "Union Street station" on p. 211, lines 7-8. Octavo, original dark green cloth. A very fine copy in a very good first issue dust jacket, with lowercase "j" in "jay Gatsby" on the back panel, hand-corrected in ink. The dust jacket has had some restoration to the folds, tape removed and some tears repaired that include expert recoloring to portions to the upper and lower spine. An excellent copy, extremely rare in the original dust jacket. The dust jacket is not only one of the most recognizable and iconic book covers of the twentieth century, but it is also one of the most rare. The cover art was entitled "Celestial Eyes" and was designed by artist Francis Cugat, who was not well-known at the time. Fitzgerald, however, fell in love with the design and actually wrote a number of things into the novel to relate it to the proposed cover. Housed in a custom quarter morocco box.. Less
Price: 165000.00 USD