The Best Place for Rare Books, Old Books, Antiquarian Books, Modern First Editions, Illustrated Books, Atlases, Manuscripts, Autographs
ABA Newsletter 344, February 2008
PETER JOLLIFFE, 1947 - 2007
"There are two kinds of dealers in rare books. The first treat books as any other commodity, to be bought, stocked and sold solely for profit. There are indeed dealers who themselves never read. The other kind are like Peter Jolliffe; more collectors, even connoisseurs, than men of business, who trade for the pleasure of handling books, of being in their company and their temporary guardians."
Peter Jolliffe, colleague and friend, died in University College Hospital just after Christmas. James Fergusson's obituary from Bookdealer is reprinted here; Julian Nangle's for The Independent can be accessed via www.independent.co.uk/news/obituaries, and James Owen's for The Times (from which the quote above is taken) via www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/comment/ obituaries. Julian Nangle reviews Peter's last catalogue.
Bookselling in Bloomsbury centred on his shop and the heart has gone out of the place. He was a gentle man, a scholar, a principled bookseller who loved books not fast bucks. But Peter also liked to party - and left money for his wake at The Plough, in Museum Street. The room was packed, as the crematorium had been for his funeral, a tribute to his many qualities.
TRADE NOTES & QUERIES
ILAB CONGRESS AND FAIR, MADRID SEPTEMBER 2008
From the Asociación Ibéria de Librerias Anticuarias (AILA):
"We would like to express the honour and great pleasure that we have in the organization of the 38º International Congress of the ILAB LILA and the 21º International Antiquarian book fair at Madrid that will take place in the Congress and Exhibition Centre from September 8th to 13th, 2008.
Madrid, a dynamic and changing capital, has an overwhelming range of cultural activities, gastronomy and hotels for all tastes. Museums like the Thyssen Foundation, modern art Queen Sofia centre and the Prado make a triangle that is worth visiting.
This allows us to introduce to all participants at the Congress and the International book fair to some of the singular treasures of Madrid like the Lazaro Galdiano Foundation with one of the most important art collections and library in Spain donated to the Nation in 1949. The Royal Palace is one of the most striking buildings in Europe for its construction, location and the variety of collections housed inside its walls; we shall have the privilege of visiting the library."
Stand rentals for the Madrid Fair range from approximately £1,150 for a shared stand up to £3,200 for the largest. Further information from www.ilabmadrid2008.com.
STAND FOR ELECTION!
All the officers of the ABA - President, Vice- President and Treasurer and four places on the Council - are up for election in April.
Current President Alan Shelley, Vice-President Ian Smith & Treasurer Jonathan Potter are offering themselves for re-election.
Now is the time for members to put themselves forward; Nomination papers for officer positions or for Council are available from the ABA office and must be submitted by: 5.30pm on TUESDAY 18th MARCH.
Nomination is open to all full members of five-years standing.
The current Council is entirely male - there is a clear need for female representation.
Nearly all the current Council members have been elected in competitive ballots and hopefully there will be five or more candidates competing for the four places this year
Resolutions for the AGM must also be submitted by: TUESDAY 18th MARCH. If you wish to raise an issue, the AGM is the place to do it. Contact the ABA office to confirm the correct procedure.
The ABA AGM will take place this year at 6.30pm in the Meeting Room, St. James's Church, Piccadilly on: WEDNESDAY 16th APRIL.
COOPER HAY IS MOVING
Cooper Hay is moving over the road; Lyon & Turnbull auctioneers are moving into his old premises, establishing a new Glasgow office. By the time the Newsletter is published, he will be underway in the new premises. See Membership Matters.
NEW METHOD FOR NOMINATING OFFICERS
The ABA Council has approved, and put into practice, a new system for the Council to nominate members for the office of President of the Association. This follows the rejection of the old 'Nominating Committee'.
Now, all members of Council have the opportunity to put forward names for consideration. The inaugural use of the system is reported in Council Minutes.
In 2007, following concern about the 'Finance and General Purposes Committee' which was seen by some members as an 'inner cabinet', President Alan Shelley ended its existence as a formal body of the Association
A further proposed reform, to end the right of past presidents attending Council in perpetuity, was defeated at the January meeting of the Council.
‘MAPS AND SOCIETY'
at The Warburg Institute Seventeenth Series: 2007-2008
Lectures in the history of cartography convened by Catherine Delano Smith (Institute of Historical Research) and Tony Campbell (formerly Map Library, British Library). Meetings are held on selected Thursdays at The Warburg Institute, University of London,Woburn Square, London WC1H OAB at 5.00 pm.
Admission is free. Meetings are followed by refreshments. All are most welcome. Enquiries: +44 (0) 20 8346 5112 (Dr Delano Smith) or email@example.com
February 28. Dr James Kelly (Worcester College, University of Oxford). 'Daniel Defoe's "Captain Singleton" (1720): Spectacular Speculative Geography'.
MEETING SPONSORED BY THE HAKLUYT SOCIETY
March 13. David Milbank Challis and Andy Rush (Industrialogical Associates /Railway Record of the British Isles). 'Mapping the Railway: An Overview and Case Study of Britain's Extensive and Largely Unexplored Record'.
April 24. Dr Nick Baron (School of History, University of Nottingham). ‘Miracles on a Geographical Map’: The Cultures of Soviet Cartography under Lenin and Stalin, 1918-1941'.
May 8. Professor Tom Koch (Department of Geography, University of British Columbia; and Department of Gerontology, Simon Fraser University, B.C.). 'Cholera in 1850s London: John Snow, His Contemporaries, and the Broad Street Map Revisited'.
May 29. Rose Mitchell (The National Archives, London). 'Castles in the Air? Sixteenth-Century Fortification Plans in The National Archives'.
This programme has been made possible through the generous sponsorship of The Antiquarian Booksellers' Association, The International Map Collectors' Society, and Jonathan Potter of Jonathan Potter Ltd. It is supported by Imago Mundi: the International Journal for the History of Cartography. www.maphistory.info/warburgprog.html
LONDON RARE BOOKS SCHOOL: JUNE - JULY 2008
Booking has now opened for this summer's London Rare Books School at London University. Reaction to last year's five courses was overwhelmingly positive - and, as a result, there are to be twelve courses this year. The ABA has been actively involved in the planning - and various ABA members will be acting as course tutors or additional lecturers. Full details are available on the LRBS website, and we would ask you to ensure that all members of your staff (as well as any customers and collectors who may be interested) are aware of what is on offer. It is hoped that the ABA's Benevolent Fund will once again be able to offer some bursaries to cover the course fees for the most deserving applicants.
Week 1: 30 June - 4 July
1. The Book in the Ancient World
Course Tutors: Professor Mike Edwards and others
2. The Medieval Book
Course Tutor: Professor Michelle Brown
3. The Printed Book in Europe 1455-2000
Course Tutor: Professor John Feather
4. A History of Maps and Mapping
Course Tutors: Dr Catherine Delano-Smith and Sarah Tyacke
5. An Introduction to Bibliography
Course Tutor: Professor Tony Edwards
6. Children's Books
Course Tutor: Jill Shefrin
Week 2: 14 July - 18 July
1. The Early Modern Book in England: Exploring the Evidence
Course Tutors: Dr Arnold Hunt, Giles Mandelbrote
2. Modern Literary Manuscripts
Course Tutor: Dr Wim Van Mierlo
3. Modern First Editions
Course Tutors: Angus O'Neill, Julian Rota, Laurence Worms
4. Bookbinding Decoration
Course Tutor: Professor Mirjam Foot
5. Mapping Land & Sea before 1800
Course Tutors: Dr Catherine Delano-Smith and Sarah Tyacke
6. Publishing Today
Course Tutor: Professor Iain Stevenson.
Each course will consist of thirteen seminars amounting in all to twenty hours of teaching time spread between Monday lunchtime and Friday afternoon. There will be timetabled 'library time' that will allow students to explore the rich resources of the University's Senate House Library, one of the UK's major research libraries. There will also be a full evening programme with an opening reception and talk, a major book history lecture, and a reception hosted by a major London antiquarian bookseller. For those able to stay on to the Saturday, there will be various additional book history-related activities on offer.
REMINDER FROM THE MEMBERSHIP SECRETARY
Membership applications take up a very great deal of time and energy: the ABA office’s, Council’s and my own. For proposers and seconders of membership applicants, please be sure of the following when agreeing to put someone forward:
- that you know the applicant well and have done enough business with them to be in a position to fill in the recommendation form adequately
- that you are confident that the applicant’s cataloguing lives up to ABA standards
- that your form will not be “sketchy, ambivalent or less than wholehearted” any of which, as stated on the form, “may well count against the application”
- that, where applicable, you have visited the applicant’s premises and are reasonably familiar with their stock, their knowledge and use of the appropriate range of reference materials, and the way in which the business is run
We always want new members and I know that it can be hard to refuse a sponsorship request. Sometimes the best response is to say that you have insufficient knowledge of their business to help in a successful application. Non-acceptance can be embarrassing for the sponsor as well as the applicant!
ABA SUMMER EXHIBITION
Latest news on the ABA Exhibition proposed by ABA publicity officers Angus O'Neill & Tim Bryars, is that this may now take place in the Quaritch Exhibition Room in Golden Square, Soho.
The idea of the Exhibition is to provide a showcase for members' books on the theme of 'Women and Books' during the summer of 08. The books will be available for sale with a 10% commission going to the ABA to cover costs. For further information, email Tim_Bryars@btconnect.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
HANDBOOK 2008 ADVERTISING
Michael Silverman is currently preparing the new ABA Handbook which will be published in time for distribution at the June Fair. The Handbook has a long 'desk life' and remains in use for two years.
4,000 copies are printed for free distribution. Only ABA members can advertise in the directory section where a half page will cost £300 and a full page £500. A booking form is included with the Newsletter.
Robert Frew Ltd is offering a rare archive of over 1600 books, periodicals and related material on the history and evolution of skiing from its origins in Scandinavia through to its development as a sport in the Alps at the end of the 19th Century and in to the 20th Century. An exhibition of items from the collections will run from 19th February - 8th March at 8, Thurloe Place.
ABE & ILAB TOP TENS
Thanks go to Adrian Harrington for obtaining these figures.
1 (HOOFT, Pieter Cornelisz). Emblemata amatoria. Afbeeldinghen van minne. Emblemes d'amour.
2 BERNARDIN DE SAINT PIERRE Paul et Virginie. $42,630
3 Nordenskjöld, Otto:: Wissenschaftliche Ergebnisse der Schwedischen Südpolar-Expedition 1901-1903 unter Mitwirkung zahlreicher Fachgenossen herausgegeben von Otto Nordenskjöld Leiter der Expedition.
4 BERINGER, J.B.A. Lithographiae Wirceburgensis, ducentis lapidum figuratorum, a potiori insectiformium, prodigiosis imaginibus exornatae specimen primum.
5 PLATO Works. Dialogues of Plato[AND] Onomasticon Theologicum.
6 Carta executoria de hidalguia en favor de Francisco de Frias de la villa de Ocana. Urkunde auf Pergament. 22 ungez. in rot linierte Blatt. Auf erstem Blatt eine große figürliche Eingangsinitiale (Maria und Jesuskind) eils goldgehöht, einer weiteren halbseitigen goldgehöhten Wappenillustration, gerahmt on Schmuckrahmen mit Blüten und Früchten.
7 CHANEL, COCO Original Autograph Letter Signed from Coco Chanel.
8 HUMBOLDT, Karl Wilhelm Von Kosmos. Entwurf einer physichen Weltbeschreibung.
9 ADDISON, Thomas (1793-1860). On the Constitutional and Local Effects of Disease of the Supra-Renal Capsules. - London, Samuel Highley, 1855.
10 Sequences (Catholic Liturgy); [Hilarius, the Hymnologist] ...TEXTUS SEQUENTIARUM CUM OPTIMO COMMENTO / Bound With / EXPOSITIO HIMNORUM cum notabili [com]memto quod semper implicat historias cu[m] optimis allegationibus sacre scripture illorum sanctoru[m] vel sanctaru[m] de quibus tales hymni decantantur. ex quib[us].
MOST EXPENSIVE BOOKS SOLD ON ABE IN 2007
1 Supplementum Summae Pisanellae by Nikolaus Osimo.
2 The Genera of Diurnal Lepidoptera by Edward Doubleday and John Westwood.
3 Navis Stultifera a Domino Sebastiano Brant primum by Jodocus Badius.
4 Ars Magna Lucis et Umbrae in X Libros Digesta by Athanasius Kircher.
5 The Holy Land, Syria , Idumea, Arabia , Egypt and Nubia by David Roberts.
6 Relativity: The Special and General Theory by Albert Einstein. The famous scientist has signed the book.
7 Musurgia universalis by Athanasius Kircher.
8 Biologia Centrali - Americana . Insecta, Lepidoptera by Frederick DuCane Godman & Osbert Salvin.
9 Alcoholics Anonymous by Bill Wilson.
10 Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions. By Bill Wilson.
THE DESTRUCTION ROOM
The quotation below is from a review written by David McKitterick in March 2006:
'...In the 1840s, there was, in Long Acre (Covent Garden), a business advertised as the Destruction Room. It was owned by Thomas and Frederick Strong, and most of its energies went into cutting up books and newspapers: "a room full of interesting books, or at least when cut up will be so". Its purpose was to supply (and promote) the craze for extra-illustrated books -copies of well-known works, from Clarendon's History to Boswell's Johnson to books of local topography, that could be fleshed out and fattened up, not just with more-or-less relevant newspaper cuttings but also (and more frequently) with engraved portraits or scenes or views of buildings. 'Cutting up' was both an amateur pastime and also one where the trade was more than ready to supply made-up volumes....'
Laurence Worms writes:
The West Glamorgan Archive has three printed advertisements for Frederick Strong at 117 Long Acre, ‘c.1880’. I am not sure this dating is correct. Contemporary directories (and the 1851 Census return) record that the business at 117 Long Acre was trading as "Strong & Sons" in 1833 and run (from at least 1839) by the sons of William Strong, Alfred Richard (b.1815) and Frederick George Strong (b.1820) - and that they described themselves throughout as varnish and japan-makers (or simply varnishers) rather than booksellers - as does Maria Anna Strong (née Harrison), Alfred's widow, who had taken the business over by the time the 1855 Post Office Directory was compiled. Alfred and Maria were living at 117 Long Acre in 1851 (with three servants, but no other resident occupants) - while Frederick was in lodgings at Brook Green, Hammersmith, in 1841, again described as a varnisher. I take Anna Maria Strong to be the woman of that name who died in London in 1860 - but can't find any further trace of Frederick on the Census Returns.
I don't have any street-directories to hand later than that for 1855 - so the next step would be to consult those, to see whether Frederick took over 117 Long Acre after 1860 to begin bookbreaking at that time - although the company may, I suppose, have also been using the extracted prints to make japan or varnish-ware - certainly many were used to make table-mats (right up to the 1950s, I believe).
RARE BOOK REVIEW 2007 AWARDS
RBR has announced its Oscars for the antiquarian book trade, or ‘industry’ as they call it.
Favourite online booktrading service is abe, book store of the year is Maggs, favourite dealer is Peter Harrington, Sotheby's London is auction house of the year, and best catalogues come from Quaritch.
Inevitably, questions come to mind - not least the number of votes cast, considering the relatively small circulation figures of RBR. The reply came from Tabitha:
'... We had around 200 voting forms returned, (although not every one of those voted for every category). These covered a full cross section of the industry; we had quite a lot of internet votes, several from American collectors or dealers; there were some entries from European collectors/dealers; we directly contacted many of the big and small dealers in the UK; but the majority of votes came from visitors to the Chelsea Book Fair, which obviously covers every demographic from dealer to serious collector, to general book lover (we had 400 magazine copies to give out for free and encouraged people to fill in a form in return for their issue). It was a very interesting experiment for us and we hope to do it again on a larger scale next year ...
Our hope is that, as people get used to the idea of there being an end of year awards for achievement in the industry, they will come to see it as a chance to help reward and acknowledge those who have provided a really good service, and as a fun opportunity to reflect on the ups and downs of the year's business. This being the first year we are of course very open to any suggestions regarding categories for next year, or any other ideas that you at the ABA may have. The winners are going to be presented with their awards at the beginning of next year. '
A follow up email from Michou Gerits pointed out that 'Not all (the replies) were from the Chelsea book fair...'
BOOK WORMS ACTIVATED BY GLOBAL WARMING?
"Yesterday I collected several hundred books from a house in Warwickshire. While I was packing them up the owner came through from another room where she was sorting paperbacks and showed me a copy of a damaged Penguin Classic (black paperback, published between late 1960’s & late 1980’s). It was full of wormholes and dust was dripping from the pages. This was definitely not silverfish nibbling, which usually affects covers and endpapers only, but the classic tunnelling which I have never seen in a 20th Century book. I told her to seal it in a plastic bag and put it straight in the bin. Should I have done more? Should I worry about the books in boxes which I am about to put out? Has anyone else seen active bookworm damage?"
Waterfield’s, 52 High Street,
Oxford OX1 4A.
Tel: 01865 721809
ANYBOOK OF HIALEAH
Conor Kenny of Kenny's Bookshop, Galway has asked that Anybook of Hialeah (see last issue of the ABA Newsletter) be removed from the ABE site.
The request has been complied with: Anybook is no longer adverting on ABE.
Udo Goellman replied to Conor: 'I've been informed by my colleagues in Canada that Anybook has been suspended on Friday. Please understand that I can't disclose any further details at this stage. Hope this helps. Let me know if you have further questions or suggestions. Thanks again for letting me know about your concerns.'
Peter Miller of Spelman's took it down from the shelf. It was priced one pound, but he gave it to me as a gift. He hadn't seen anything like it before, and neither had I.
It was a copy of Pyramid, by Lionel Birch, published by Philip Allan, 1931 - but cut down and rebound by 'Everybody's Books', 4, Denmark Street, Charing Cross Road, WC2.
I haven't been able to find any reference to 'Everybody's' on the internet and no copy of any book for sale on Bookfinder which refers to an Everybody's binding - which seems surprising. The illustration shows the front cover, printed in blue explaining the Everybody's war-time philosophy of 're-binding books ... in order that as many books as possible may do their job twice and so help the vital "save paper" campaign'. The title and author are hand-lettered in red.
With no luck finding 'Everybody's', I looked for any other copies of this title on the net. There is just one, offered by Zouch Books:
BIRCH, LIONEL - Pyramid. Philip Allen 1931, First Edition & First Printing, bound in grey cloth, 306pp. Birch's first novel, set in a public school, its theme of schoolboy homosexuality may well reflect the author's own experience (he was an Old Salopian, though both he and his books after him were banned by the school and I am given to understand that pupils who followed him were made to understand that the consequences of being caught in possession Pyramid would be very severe indeed). He continued and developed the theme in his second novel 'The System' (1932) Now largely forgotten, these titles are exceedingly difficult to find.GBP 250.00
I have promised to share any proceeds with Spelman's - but not before a note in the Newsletter ... Someone must know something about Everybody's Books?
DIAMONDS ARE TRUMPS
Bernie Shapero, if not quite achieving his ambition to become one of a triumvirate of 'Maggs, Quaritich & Shapero' in the antiquarian bookselling world, does seem to be approaching the book-auction equivalent of 'Christies, Sothebys and Bonhams' as Bloomsbury Book Auctions have, in their own restrained press release, experienced an 'annus mirabilis ... our most successful year ever.' No doubt selling their own stock (or lots in which BBA ‘has a financial interest, direct or indirect’) - watch for the diamond - has helped. Bernie - wearing his Bernard J. Shapero Rare Books hat - has become an ABA additional nominee.
Wondering whether enough dust had settled after the purchase and sale of Blake's 'Designs for Blair's Grave' - the buyer trumping The Tate before splitting up the drawings and watercolours into separate lots at Sotheby's New York in May 2006 - I asked Paul Williams if he could tell the full story. 'Nothing would give me greater pleasure, but in a rash moment we signed a confidentiality agreement. So sadly I must decline for now... no doubt in the future ....'
The large collection of Northumberland ephemera being sold bit-by-bit at Thomson, Roddick's saleroom in Carlise was mentioned in a previous Newsletter. Apparently the collection is VAST. The papers come from the basement of a solicitor. The Northumberland Public Record Office, believing the whole archive was coming to them - and with that expectation, had begun cataloguing. After the death of the owner, it became apparent that this legacy had not been incorporated in the will and the papers were sold for a figure reputed to be £59,000.
Now, the material is beginning to appear in other specialist auction houses such as Mullock's, Strides and ebay. The Northumberland PRO are understandably unhappy as it means the breaking up of the finest collection of its kind (apart from the Duke of Northumberland's at Alnwick Castle). From a bookselling point of view, no doubt the quantity being sold off sheet by sheet will soon mean lower prices - except for the finest examples.
CATALOGUE ENTRY OF THE MONTH
(MACGREGOR, Sir Duncan) A Narrative of the Loss of the Kent East Indiaman, in the Bay of Biscay, on the 1st March, 1825. In a letter to a friend. By a Passenger. FIRST EDITION. Edinburgh: Waugh & Innes; M. Ogle, Glasgow; &c. Disbound. 78pp. 1825. Affected by damp in lower margins.
IT’S WHAT WE ARE UP AGAINST: I
'This scarce antiquarian book is included in our Special Legacy Reprint Series. In the interest of creating a more extensive selection of rare historical book reprints, we have chosen to reproduce this title even though it may possibly have occasional imperfections such as missing and blurred pages, missing text, poor pictures, markings, dark....'
IT’S WHAT WE ARE UP AGAINST: II
‘hello, i am m.... p...., and i have a problem regarding antiquarian books: i would like to have a small collection of antique historical books, but i would like to buy firsthand directly from private people. The problem is that i dont know how to get to them, going door to door, and asking if anyone wants to sell old books, also i was thinking of advertising in newspapers, magazines, but i dont know which one is good. If you could help me with any advice about this problem, i would appreciate it a lot. Thank you very much.’
CLASSIC CHURCH NOTICES
Don’t let worry kill you - Let the church help.
Thursday night - potluck supper. Prayer and medication to follow.
For those of you who have children and don’t know it, we have a nursery downstairs.
This afternoon there will be a meeting in the south and north ends of the church. Children will be baptized at both ends.
Wednesday, the Ladies Liturgy Society will meet. Mrs. Jones will sing Put Me In My Little Bed accompanied by the pastor.
Thursday at 5.00pm there will be a meeting of the Little Mothers Club. All wishing to become little mothers, please see the minister in his study.
This being Easter Sunday, we will ask Mrs. Lewis to come forward and lay an egg on the altar.
Next Sunday, a special collection will be taken to defray the cost of the new carpet. All those wishing to do something on the new carpet will come forward and get a piece of paper.
The ladies of the church have cast off clothing of every kind and they may be seen in the church basement Friday.
At the evening service tonight, the sermon topic will be What is Hell? Come early and listen to our choir practice.
A Modest Collection: Private Libraries Association 1956-2006.
£25.00 (free to members).
Available from Claude Cox, 3 & 5
Silent Street, Ipswich,
Suffolk, IP1 1TF
Eight or nine booksellers (out of 83 contributors) wear their collector's hat in this friendly record of Fifty Years of the Private Libraries Association, run by the energetic David Chambers. Most of the brief essays on 'modest collections' are accompanied by photographs of the members. In addition there are four essays on the history of the Association together with a bibliography of publications, and special reprints and issues of The Private Library.
Simon Eliot, Andrew Nash, Ian Willison (Ed.)
Literary Cultures and the Material Book.
The British Library. £45.00
'While the technological hype that dominated the 1990s eventually collided with reality and subsided, one of the period’s most tenacious ideas has not: the conviction that the future of books is in jeopardy. Yet the promise — or peril — of widespread textual availability on the Internet, along with the economic pressures of globalization, has had the unexpected beneficial effect of sparking interest in the relatively young discipline of the history of the book.
The essays collected in Literary Cultures and the Material Book cast a wide net—from China and Russia to South America and New Zealand—to investigate the vital relationship between actual, physical books and the study of literary cultures. How books are created, sold, and experienced as material objects is a fascinating and little understood element of literary culture, and the contributors to this volume build on the pioneering work of earlier scholars to bring the discipline into the present. As books enter uncharted and uncertain territory in the twenty-first century, understanding their impact on our globalized culture is more important than ever.' 444pp and 30 contributors
Arthur Morrison. A Bibliography of First Editions. £11.00.
Kakapo Press Kezdi utca 3, 6726 Szeged,
Dr Jeremy Parrott is an English bookseller specialising in late Victorian and Edwardian fiction who lives in Hungary. Arthur Morrison (1863-1945) was a journalist who made his name with the Martin Hewitt detective stories, his London low-life tales such as A Child of the Jago and his expertise in Japanese prints and painters. This bibliography is a brief 71 pages, but it does its job well, with colour and b&w illustrations. Unfortunately second, third and later editions are not included. This is a pity for a writer of only 19 titles (plus two collaborations, and three other books with contributions by). And, as Dr.Parrott admits, there is still much work to do on Morrison's journalism. Email orders to email@example.com
HONG KONG BOOKFAIR
In this, the first Chinese international bookfair, (though not the first in Hong Kong, which I understand was some 5 years ago) there was a real pioneering spirit of expectation and adventure.
The fair was massively oversubscribed, with 64 booksellers, 15 from the UK. This meant that the venue was not ideal, with the booksellers spread over three rooms. However, this did not deter visitors, of which there were approximately 1500. These were mostly Asian, both private and institutional: there was a noticeable lack of ex-pats, which many were expecting, but with ever present budgetary constraints, it was deemed wise to make the push for the Asian market. It was certainly well covered in the press, radio and television, both before and during the fair. Sales were, overall, extremely good with, I gather, as much as US 2 million sold. Sadly not all with us: but there was enough money sloshing around for even the most unsuccessful to feel positively about the fair and its potential. This achievement is due in no small part to the magnificent dedication and hard work of the core team of Paul Feain, Mr. Mitsuo Nitta, Chris Li, Ellie Aroney, and Fang Ling Jong.
It has to be said, the Chinese do things differently. Of course, as booksellers, we’re not above a haggle, but 50% discount straight off the bat was startling. Also, my near neighbours Robert Frew and Barbara Grigor-Taylor did the majority of their business in, literally, the last 20 minutes of the fair. There was a real down-and-dirty market mentality that was thrilling to watch. The naivetes of the questions were also curiously refreshing and showed real interest. One customer asked if he could perhaps buy a copy that hadn’t been read; another faced with the two copies of an identical title, one signed and one unsigned, priced accordingly, asked “why didn’t he sign that one?”. There was great interest in the concept of book buying and collecting that cut through the usual bookfair ennui, though there was, unsurprisingly, an insularity that meant that the dealers with Chinese, Chinese/Western material attracted the most sales. It would be good to combine the next fair perhaps with some sort of symposium/lecture/workshop on book collecting: it would appeal, could inspire, and certainly build on fledgling interest.
The Western booksellers had made a real effort, with many providing parallel descriptions in Mandarin. John Randall’s impressive catalogue in rich imperial yellow was particularly enticing, with books priced from £15.00 to £75,000. One bookseller, rather waspishly, declared that it was a ‘Chino-Japanese fair to which we’ve been invited to defray costs’, but this wasn’t a general view. Most people seemed happy to be there and optimistic about future sales. Were there collectors there? Certainly. Could it create a new generation of collectors? Judging by the amount of teenagers that I saw floating around on all three days (some faces repeatedly), with bags, with books in them (as opposed to catalogues) it could be a real possibility. Which, after all, is what it’s all about.
THE ANTIQUARIAN BOOKFAIR CHELSEA 2007
‘The friendliest fair, we will be back next year’ – Ilona and James Samborne, first time visitors from the USA. ‘ Roger, we have been made to feel most welcome by you, your committee and the other exhibitors, thank you so much, we will be back next year’ - Didier Deroux, Librairie Solstices, Lille, France, first time exhibitors.
With sales to private customers increasing by 60% this year – it seems to me that Ms ‘Everard’ (her complaints were aired in Book & Magazine Collector) must have been at another Chelsea Bookfair!
With a total take of £377,928 and an average of £5249, 11% up on 2006, we must be doing something right – yes, selling the best books at the right prices, Ms. Everard.
My impression was that the fair was quite lively for the two days; however, I was disappointed more people did not visit Keith Fletcher’s fabulous exhibition on the stage. Keith was meticulous in his planning, and gave Marianne a drawing of how he wanted the glass cases and display boards positioned to ensure the chronological order of the exhibits. To comply with Health and Safety regulations we were told it was impossible to have the layout we wanted, so poor Keith had to re – arrange the whole thing on Friday morning before the fair opened and then set his books up! The net result of this was that I then had a spare glass case which I used to mount a small display of ABA memorabilia in the cafeteria.
There are still problems with the cloakroom which causes a lot of frustration to visitors in their, understandable, eagerness to enter the Fair. This is something my committee are looking at, however, my feeling is we may have to live with it. I was pleased with the new banner hung outside the hall (how many of you noticed it? ), the red could have been a touch brighter, so we have negotiated a small discount from the manufacturer. There were a few negative comments about the cafeteria which we are following up. The breakdown went quite well, although because of mis-communication on my Committee’s side there were a couple of little hiccups at the back door which will not happen again providing you talk us.
As ever my thanks go to Alex, Christopher, and Debs for their hard work and perseverance with me. Thanks also to Marianne, John, Ped and especially Sandy Critchley for manning the ABA desk and performing the duties of a general factotum where and whenever needed. ‘Ed’ our Chief Porter was, as ever, the epitome of efficiency and hard work and deserves all our thanks. I would also like to thank ‘Nish’ the Events Manager at Chelsea Old Town Hall for his help, understanding and patience before, during, and after the event, I hope he is on duty during the Bookfair next year.
Lastly, I would like to thank all the exhibitors for bringing such quality material to Chelsea; it is no surprise to me that the Samborne’s were thrilled by the books they saw, and purchased, and that they ‘were more beautiful than what we see at fairs in America’, a compliment indeed for the ABA from the two American collectors.
ABA Bookfairs are a success because they have the best booksellers selling the best books. Long may it be so.
Chair Chelsea Bookfair Committee
ABA CATALOGUE TWO
Following the success of ABA Catalogue One (see next page), we are here offering duplicates from the ABA Reference Library, they are all from the recent purchase of the books submitted for the ILAB Bibliography prize, and are in fine condition. On this occasion the items are offered for sale at the prices stated. First come, first served: orders should be sent to The ABA Librarian, Roger Treglown, Sunderland House, Sunderland Street, Macclesfield, Cheshire SK11 6JF, tel: 01625 618978, email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Invoices for purchases will be despatched by the ABA Office to include postage at cost.
1. ACCORTI, Marco: Le api de carta bibliografia della letteratura Italiana sull' ape e sul miele. Firenze: Leo S. Olschki ... 2000. 8vo. First edn. Paperback. Pp. xliii, 283 . £10.00
2. BARBIERI, Edoardo: Humane litterae 3. Il libro nella storia. Milano: Edizioni C.U.S.L.2000. 8vo. First edn. Paperback. Pp. xiii, v279. £8.00
3. BARNARD, John, and Mc Kenzie, D.F. (Editors ): The Cambridge history of the Book in Britain. Volume IV. 1557-1695. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 2002. 8vo. First edn. Pp. xxvii, 891. Plates . £50.00
4. BOND, W.H. & AMORY, Hugh (editors ): The printed catalogues of the Harvard College Library 1723-1790. Boston: The Colonial Society of Massaachusetts. 1996. 8vo. Firste dn. Pp. xli, 710. £20.00
5. BONOMELLI, Marina: Quaderni di sicurta' documenti di storia delle assicurazioni la biblioteca Mansutti. Milan: Antea Edizioni. 1996. 80. First edn. Paperback. Pp. 683 £10.00
6. BURLINGHAM, Cynthia and Whiteman, Bruce (editors): The world from here. Treasures of the great libraries of Los Angeles. Los Angeles: UCLA Grunwald Centre of the Graphic Arts ... 2001. 4to. First edn. Pp. 464. £10.00
7. CONWAY, Melissa: The diario of the printing press of San Jacopo di Ripoli 1476-1484. Commentary and transcription. Firenze: Leo S. Olschki. 1999. 8vo. First edn. Paperback. Pp. viii, 366. £10.00
8. Echeverria, DURAND, and WILKIE, Everett C.: The French image of America, a chronological and subject bibliography of French books printed before 1816 relating to the British North American Colonies and the United States. 1658-1815. Metuchen, New Jersey; and London: The Scarecrow Press, Inc. 1994. 8vo. 2 volumes. First edn. Pp. xxxvii, 775 ; 1559.Vol I : 1658-1790. Vol. II 1791-1815. £30.00
9. FONTAINAS, Adrienne et Luc. And van BALBERGHE, Emile: Publications de la Librairie Denman bibliographie. Bruxelles: Archives et Musee de la Litterature. 1999. 8vo. First edn. paperback. Pp. x, 374 £5.00
10. GATTA, Masimo: Bibliografia degli scritti di Gino Doria. Napoli: Collonnese Editori. 1998. 8vo. First edn. Paperback. Pp. 125. £5.00
11. GERITS, Anton: Op dubbelspoor en Pilatusbaan. Zuthpen: Walberg Pers. [2000?] 8vo. First edn. Pp. 384. £5.00
12. GIAMBONINI, Francesco: Bibliografia delle opere a stampa di Giambattista Marino. Firenze: Leo S. Olschki ... 2000. 2 volumes. 8vo. Paperback. Pp. 491; 922 . £15.00
13. GIUNCHEDI, Carla. GRIGNANI, Elisa: La società bibliografica Italiana 1896 - 1915 ... Firenze: Leo Olschki Editore. 1994. 8vo. First edn. Limp card wrappers. Pp. xi, 226. £5.00
14. GONZALEZ, E. Gonzalez, and RODRIGUEZ, Victor: Los Dialogosde vives y la imprenta. Fortuna de un manual escolar renacenista ( 1539 - 1994. ) Valemcia: Institucio Alfons el Magnanim. 1999. 8vo. First edn. Pp. 543. Paperback. £10.00
15. GRIFFITHS, David N.: The bibliography of the Book of Common Prayer. London and New Castle, Delaware [USA]: The British Library and The Oak Knoll Press. 2002. 4to. First edn. Pp. vii, 616. With the bookplate of the ABA Reference Library on the front pastedown. £30.00
16. HAMMOND, Wayne G.; with the assistance of ANDERSON, Douglas A.: J.R.R. TOLKIEN. A descripive bibliography. Winchester: St Paul's Bibliographies. Delaware : Oak Knoll Bookjs. 1993. 8vo. First edn. Pp. xi, 434. £25.00
17. HELLINGA, Lotte, and TRAPP, J.B. (Editors): The Camebridge history of the book in Britain. Volume III 1400-1557. Cambridge: Cambridge Iniversity Press. 1999. 4to. First edn. Pp. xxiv, 743. £50.00
18. JACKSON, H. J.: Marginalia, readers writing in books. New Haven and London: Yale university Press. 2001. 8vo. First edn. Pp. 324. £10.00
19. KAHAN, Basil: Ottmar Mergenthaler the man and his machine. New Castle, Delaware. Oak Knoll Press. 2000. 4to. First edn. Pp. xv, 244. £5.00
20. LOMAZOW, Steven: American periodicals. An annotated catalogue of a collection by Steven Lomazow, M.D. West Orange, New Jersey: Steven Lomazow. 1996. 4to. First edn. Pp. xii, 599. £20.00
21. NUOVO, Angela: Ill commercio librario nell' Italia del rinascimento. Milano: Franco Angeli. 1998. 8vo0. First edn. Paperback. Pp. 288. £8.00
22. OLSEN, Sven - Erik Sandermann: Bibliographia discipuli Linnæi. Bibliographies of the 331 pupils of Linnæus. Copenhagen: [Bibliotheca Linnæana Danica]. 1997. 8vo. First edn. Paperback. Pp. 458. £10.00
23. PYE, John William: The most significant books published by Ticknor and Fields 1832-1871. A guidebook for collectors. Brockton, Massachusetts: John William Pye Rare Books. 1995. 8vo. First edn. Pp. xi, 112. £5.00
24. ROSSI, Marielsa: Il libro antico dal xv al xix secolo. Analsi e applicazione della seconde edizione dell' Isbda(A). Presentazione di Giovanni Solimine. Firenze: Leo S. Olschki Editore. 1994 8vo. Second edn. Paperback. Pp. 209 £8.00
25. ROTHSCHILD, Loren & Francis: William Somerset Maugham. A bibliographical catalogue ... Los Angeles: Heritage Bookshop Inc. 2001. 4to. First edn. Pp. xiii, 370. £10.00
26. SCOTT, Rebecca, HOLT, Thomas C.; et al: Societies after slavery. A selected bibliography of printed sources on the Cuba, Brazil, British Colonial Africa, South Africa, and the British West Indies. Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press. 2002. 8vo. First edn. Pp. xvi, 411. £20.00
28. WINDLE, John, and Pippin Karma: Thomas Frognal Dibdin 1776-1847. A bibliography. New Castle, Delaware: Oak Knoll Press. 8vo. First edn. Pp. xxiii, 285. £10.00
29. ZBORAY, Ronald E.; and ZBORAY Mary Saracino: A handbook for the study of book history in the United States. Washington D.C.: Center for the book. Library of Congress. 2000. 8vo. First edn. Limp card wrappers. Pp. ix, 155. £5.00
ABA CATALOGUE ONE – RESULTS!
Very many thanks to those members who submitted generous tender offers (both winning and unsuccessful) for the items in the first ABA Catalogue – items which found their way into the ABA office, and remained unclaimed for many years.
The sale raised the excellent total of £1,092 for the Benevolent Fund! The winning bids are listed below:
1. Abraham, Philip, Curiosities of Judaism £105, Jarndyce.
2. Amis, Kingsley, The Evans Country £35, Sotheran’s.
3. Bible, Hieroglyphical £113, John Price.
4. Coptic Manuscript £210, Graves-Johnston.
5. Cromwell, Oliver, Letters £15, Jarndyce.
6. Dante Alighieri, The Vision No offers.
7. Diary or Complete Common-Place Book £22, Jarndyce.
8. Haworth-Booth, Digby, Kleinias No offers.
9. Lacroix, Paul, Sciences et Lettres £25, Jarndyce.
10. London Map, Regent's Park £150, Robert Frew.
11. Methold, William, Naauw-Keurige Aanteekeningen £77, John Price.
12. Orwell, George, The English People £15, Critchley.
13. Perry, William, Herne's Oak £300, Ian Marr.
14. [Price, Harry], Ghost Hunter £5, Jarndyce.
15. Reelant, Adrian, Hadriani.…No offers.
16. Wilson, Horace Hayman, Manual of History No offers.
17. Wright, G.N., [Editor], Gallery of Engravings £20, Jarndyce.
18. Young, Art, Thomas Rowlandson No offers. Total £1,092.
The bottle of champagne was won by Michael Graves-Johnston with his guess of £1,050 for the total amount of the successful offers.
OTHER LIVES - Chris Kohler as a Samaritan
It is 2 o’clock in the morning and I have come into our local Samaritans branch to do the 2am to 5am duty. We work 3 hour shifts, always in pairs as the support from a fellow Samaritan is vital. Tonight I am with, let’s say, Joan. A third Samaritan, let’s say Sarah, is the night-leader and she is at home ready to be called on for support or help during our duty and to whom we will de-brief later in the day.
One of the phones rings (we have 2 lines open). Leatherhead Samaritans has about 120 trained volunteers and last year responded to just over 30,000 calls. All Samaritan contacts are totally confidential and we don’t have the facility to trace calls. Callers can tell us anything – anything – and it will remain confidential to Samaritans. One exception only – bomb warnings are passed on to the police. The phone goes again. This 2-5 duty in the early morning is usually busy. My troubles, your unhappiness and people’s distress and despair can feel particularly awful at this time of day. Our phones are open 24 hours a day.
We answer an email. Most of the work is on the phone but some people prefer to visit the branch during the day to talk face-to-face with us and we welcomed 170 such callers last year as well as replying to about a thousand emails. The essence of what we do is listening. We listen and listen and then may say to the caller “please tell me more”. We don’t judge anybody – we listen without prejudice. The phone goes again. We don’t give advice. We don’t solve problems. We might ask “what do you see as your options?”. We try and provide a safe place where people can talk, perhaps for the first time, about difficult feelings including suicidal feelings. Callers may be unable or unwilling to express such feelings to anyone else in their lives.
We believe that everyone has the right to make fundamental decisions about their own life, including the decision to die by suicide. The phone goes again. Sometimes people who have already started to take their own lives phone us and we will explore with them if this is what they really want to do and we will ask them if they want to call for an ambulance. We accept their decision which may be for us to stay on the phone while they die.
The phone goes again. It is now 3.30am and the phones are quieter. We make a cup of tea and chat. Samaritans are a diverse lot – 20 year olds to 80 year olds – widely differing backgrounds – bewildering spectrum of opinions. Both phones ring simultaneously – one call lasts for 3 minutes and the other one for an hour. There are some 200 Samaritan branches and last year the 17,000 Samaritan volunteers responded to over 5 million contacts. We take 3 more phone calls before we finish our duty at 5.00am and go home.
The content of the 10 phone calls and one email we handled are confidential to Samaritans. Our callers are ordinary people – you and me – needing to talk about feelings arising from what has happened to them. Spend a few minutes thinking about what the word ‘loss’ could involve. I’ll start you off: loss of a limb, a relationship, a dog, your self-esteem, a parent, a role ... you will think of many more.
Life isn’t perfect. Stuff happens. Which results in feelings. Feelings can become powerful and sometimes overwhelming. Life can get hard to handle and it can help to talk. Samaritans are available day and night to listen in confidence offering nonjudgemental support and compassion.
Want to know more? www.samaritans.org
I. MERVYN JANNETTA
Not quite in time for Christmas (at least not here in the UK) David Brass Rare Books sends Catalogue 103 A Selection of Fine and Rare Books, containing a varied assortment of well over four hundred items. Five to an A4 page, each gets a single relatively small illustration accompanied by a brief (maximum 10 short lines) description. The single exception is the seventeenth-century 24ct. gold enamelled, bejewelled book cover (minus book) which evidently defies description (“must be seen to be believed”; price, plus full description, available on request), and decorates the back cover of the catalogue instead. In his foreword Brass refers to the ‘new format’, with a promise of full catalogue descriptions and more photographs available on-line. The current catalogue as such wasn’t there at the time of writing; individual items checked, apart from the book cover, do appear. Early printed books (such as a nice copy in original state of an early 18th-century edition of Pilgrim’s Progress, $7500; or a 1499 Italian printing of Sasso’s Epigrams (lacks sig. r, $5500) fight for notice among pages of Beatrix Potter or Arthur Rackham. An(other) attractive copy of a Gulliver 1st did, however, catch the eye. Sound, unsophisticated copies in original contemporary calf are by now something of a genuine rarity, maybe even ‘remarkable’, or ‘sensational’. But ‘once in a lifetime’? Perhaps not – not, anyway, if one recalls Quaritch’s recent English fiction catalogue 1555 (see Newsletter no. 342, autumn 2007), and their truly exceptional, fine, fresh copy. The Brass vignette photograph immediately prompts a question or two about condition, and reference to the additional photographs and very much fuller physical description posted on-line, serves only to reinforce doubt (perhaps reflected in the price: $150,000).
Not an ABA member, but a well-known specialist in early English books, James Burmester issued Catalogue 70 English Books 1670-1900: Recent acquisitions. Here are some two hundred items, half of which form a single unclassified alphabetical sequence. The remainder are grouped into just four categories, including ‘Novels’ and ‘Verse’, and two broad subject areas. Alongside such staple figures as Boswell (first edition in German of the Account of Corsica, Leipzig 1768, £850), and Adam Smith (Theory of Moral Sentiments, 5th edn, 1781, £1250), the first sequence contains such curiosities as The History of Birds, Adorned with cuts, 1791 (‘one known copy’, £1750; and Rational Sports: or entertaining Questions and Answers in Trades, Gainsborough 1796 (‘one copy known’, £1750). As well as a rare provincial English grammar by the Nottingham schoolmaster John Henson, ca 1760, (£1850); a 28-page house sale catalogue (Nottingham, 1807, £500) (from the collection of W.A. Potter?); and the “first English book wholly devoted to shepherding” by William Ellis, 1756 (£900); there are two rare Scottish plant catalogues ([Edinburgh, 1785?], £3000; and [Hawick? or Edinburgh? 1795?], £2750); and a rare 1766 English translation of a novel by Baculard d’Arnaud (Huntington only, £2250).
Christopher Edwards List 38 Fine English and Continental Books and Manuscripts has 88 items from the 16th to the 19th century. Three tracts on the demonic possession and exorcism of a Nottingham man in the late 16th-century had been in a volume already (the second and commonest title got a bit mutilated in the process). Now cut round and mounted, and rebound, they were kept together by the Nottingham collector W.A. Potter (£6500). The Macclesfield library yields a few more interesting early books: these include a rare and attractive copy book (£2500); a group of early 17th-century newsbooks (7-in-one, £1500); and a Strasbourg 1550 Vitruvius annotated in England in the late sixteenth century (£4500). Elsewhere, a presentation copy of a provincial play by the Norfolk clergyman James Plumptre, The Coventry Act, Norwich 1793 (on fine paper, uncut in original wrappers, worn) commands £150: for the same money could be had ten Hills pirated poems (disbound, mostly rather water-stained).
James Fenning Catalogue 238 A Miscellany comprises just under three hundred items in all fields. It quickly becomes apparent that this list will have special appeal to collectors of English fiction. Item 10 Jane Austen may first command attention being a very good set of the first illustrated, first one-volume edition in Bentley’s Standard Novels series, in contemporary deep olive green morocco (£9500). The sequence begins, however, with item 3 (Ainsworth’s Rookwood, 1837, £95, followed by more than sixty other titles scattered through the list, all uniformly bound and ranging between £55 and £115. Price exceptions (besides Austen) include Sadleir rarities such as Fenimore Cooper’s Afloat and Ashore, (1854, £450); Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1854, £450); and Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein bound with two other titles (‘usually discarded’, according to Fenning, £6,500). David Brass Catalogue 103 (see above) has a copy of the three works, bound in original glazed plum linen (spines faded, paper labels chipped, $17,500). Among Fenning’s other items of Irish interest, we note a first Dublin Culpeper of 1787 (contemporary calf, rebacked, repairs, £550); a Thomas Moore Melodies Irish and National, reprinted Pisa, 1823 (contemporary half-calf, worn, £75); and an early Manchester printing of the Orange Order’s rules and regulations (stitched, as issued?, in contemporary wrappers, £550).
Not so long ago recipients of catalogues from non-member Forest Books knew what to expect: substantial lists of recent bibliographical reference material, leavened with a smattering of related historical material, including (and in particular) 18th and 19th century book auction and booksellers’ catalogues. More recently, though, began a series of miscellany catalogues of more wide ranging, and (for nonspecialists) more exciting material from the 16th–19th centuries. The latest offering, Miscellany Three, kicks off with a real corker. Opening with the bold caps heading INCUNABULA, the implicit promise of more than one isn’t borne out, but the one there is more than makes up for any fleeting disappointment. It’s a very handsome long-lined illuminated and decorated copy of St Augustine’s De Civitate Dei (Naples, 1477), which benefits from colour illustrations on front and back covers. and a full two-page descriptive note provided by Dr Lotte Hellinga, formerly incunabulist at the British Library (£14,750).
Grant & Shaw issued Catalogue 74 Christmas 2007 in good time (though the insidefront cover description ‘New acquisitions’ is only relative: item 1, Adam was seen in their last). The short list includes an interesting piece of printed ephemera from St Helena (£750), and an attractive copy of a late 18th-c. Dublin BCP in contemporary Irish red goatskin (the rear-cover illustration makes its 18mo format look deceptively large).
John Hart’s slim-line List 17 Fiction offers just one hundred items. Nineteenth-century imprints predominate, amongst them a clutch of half-a-dozen yellowbacks: notoriously fragile, and increasingly scarce in anything like fine condition, prices here vary from £65 (T.A. Trollope, Lindisfarne Chase, ‘nicked at head, worn at foot, inner hinge strengthened) to £150 (‘John S. Winter’, i.e. Henrietta E.V. Stannard, Into an Unknown World, (‘minor rubbing to foot of spine, otherwise fine’). Items 10-17 form a group of late-18th- early- 19th-century chapbooks: amongst them is a rare Nottingham printing of The Sleeping Beauty in the Wood, an Oriental Tale (bound with two other titles in ‘19th c. roan’ from the Potter Nottingham collection, £750). Elsewhere there is an 1802 Vienna printing of Croxall’s Fables (‘contemporary green blindstamped cloth’ £120); a 1797 Berlin edition of Goldsmith’s Vicar of Wakefield with a preface by Benjamin Beresford, teacher of English at the Prussian Court, with notes on punctuation and printed with accents throughout as guides to pronunciation (contemporary wrappers, £175). The plum has to be Raffalovich’s A Willing Exile, 1890 (‘one of the black tulip’s of 1890s literature’, contemporary half dark green morocco, £5500).
Heraldry Today’s New Year list squeezes some four hundred items into 24 two-column pages. The eight designated subject subdivisions make helpful distinctions, but the unvarying layout with minimal typographic variation makes it harder than it could (perhaps should) be to discriminate between items. All told, early books are few – they include 2 copies of the ‘last and best’ 6th edn of Guillim’s Display of Heraldry, 1724 (one in old mottled calf, rebacked, £625; the other, ft. cover detached, some ff. separated, £350). Sylvanus Morgan’s Sphere of Gentry, 1661, rebound in full calf is £750; Collins’s Peerage of England, 5th edn, 1779 (7 of 8 vols rebacked, £345; Douglas’s Peerage of Scotland 2nd (and best) edn, 2 vols, 1813 (half calf, £450). Amongst odds and ends of printed ephemera in the ‘Topography’ section, is a Wiltshire public notice warning of statutory punishments for vandalism against trees (single sheet, 1766, £5).
Catalogue 326 from Howes Bookshop, English Literature has over two hundred 17th and 18th century books. The three 17th century imprints include an imperfect copy of Bishop Wilkins’s Essay towards a Philosophical Language, (lacks 2 pls, ‘moderately priced’ £675). As well as a few Baskerville’s (£125-£225), fine press items include a Bulmer (£120), and a Bensley (Wyatt & Surrey, Works, Currer bookplates, £225).
Jarndyce 174, Books and Pamphlets of the 17th- and 18th-centuries Part I – contains just over one hundred items from the earlier period, plus 360 18th-c. books from the first eight letters of the alphabet; at the end, a one-page subject index helpfully directs attention to over thirty categories. In the first section there’s a L’Estrange Aesop, pt. 1 3rd edn, pt. II 1st edn 1699 (£680); Burton’s Anatomy of Melancholy 7th edn (contemporary calf, repaired, £850); a 1699 reissue of the first illustrated Paradise Lost (rebound in periodstyle [?] crushed morocco, £1000). Later books include a copy of Lyrical Ballads, vol. 1 2nd edn 1st issue; vol. 2 1st edn, 1st issue: in contemporary calf, rebacked retaining original labels, lettered ‘Wordsworth’s Poems’ (£5800). Curiosities include an unrecorded single sheet of 1771, setting out the terms of engagement required to be sworn by members of the Constitutional Society, formed by the radical Horne Tooke (£300); and a List of Proprietors of Licenses for Private Sedan Chairs, Dublin 1788, testament to an imaginative scheme designed to generate funds for the maternity hospital (£1500). A rare Ormskirk imprint on a collection of Sunday-School prayers and graces is evidently all there, despite the bizarre pagination (disbound, £125).
From John Robertshaw comes Catalogue 106, including among the early continental books a first French Gulliver, with the ‘keys’ and the spurious third volume (£650). A handful of early English books has a Dublin reprint of Minifie’s Count de Poland (£650), and a late edition of Veneroni’s Complete Italian Master (£25). The list ends with a copy of Wingate’s Arithmetic, 19th edn, 1760: nothing very remarkable, except that this copy was discarded from the Equitable Life Assurance Society (£100). Some might feel they’d have done better to hang on to it.
Ken Spelman 63 Recent Acquisitions has 300-plus items in seven categories. The first, ‘Manuscripts and Ephemera; includes a substantial archive detailing improvements to a ate 18th-century estate of Thomas Adams of Alnwick: ca 200 pieces of paper documenting amongst other things the purchase and planting of tens of thousands of trees (£5500). In the ‘Art Architecture Design’ section are a couple of Macclesfield Library books (Elshotz on colour distillation, etc., 1677, £3200; Du Fresnoy on Painting, trs. by Dryden, 1716, £580). Elsewhere there’s a ‘very good large clean copy’ of Cary’s New Map of England and Wales, etc, 1794 (£750). It is ‘unusual to find this map surviving in its original atlas form, intact with gazetteer, subscribers’ list, etc’; doubly unusual then, he remarked (though not unkindly meant), to find here a second copy, not quite so fresh (£480).
Suzanne Schulz-Falster Rare Books issued Catalogue 13 in a neatly-presented series: 140 items fully and carefully described, supported by a good selection of illustrations (catalogue design and production by Kitzinger and Smith Settle, is duly credited). Predominantly continental in varied fields of interest, books and bibliography are well represented - not least by a ‘very good’ copy of the Zurich 1545 Gesner in its ‘original full richly blind-stamped pigskin over wooden boards’. The volume contains extensive annotations reflecting its use by an 18th-century Heidelberg doctor (£16,000). There is also a fine copy, with portrait, of Fournier’s Manuel typographique, ‘the most important book on 18th-c. French typography’ (£4800). Inside the rear cover there’s notice of ‘a magnificent collection of forty splendid examples’ of later 18th-c. Italian vanity or ‘presentation’ publishing: these are treated to a separate, richly illustrated, descriptive catalogue (£68,000).
Unsworths Antiquarian Booksellers Catalogue 19 brings together 140 items, a good few of which are early editions of the classics, with a smattering of theology, and antiquarian writings. A 4-vol. set of the Domesday Book has each volume in its earliest state (accounting for the absence of a title-leaf to vol. 1, and prefatory material in vol. 3); bindings understandably not uniform, the description stops short of claiming shared provenance for all four (£2500).
A 200pp catalogue of 114 items supported by numerous half-&am